2017 in review … what killed us

Today is 03/22/2019.. who will not be here tomorrow

2016 in review … what killed us

6775 Americans will die EVERY DAY – from various reasons


140 will be SUCCESSFUL – including 20 veterans

270 will die from hospital acquired antibiotic resistant “bug” because staff won’t properly wash hands and/or proper infection control.

350 will die from their use/abuse of the drug ALCOHOL

1200 will die from their use/abuse of the drug NICOTINE

1400 will contract C-DIF from Hospital or Nursing home because staff doesn’t properly wash their hands are adhere to infection control  

80 WILL DIE mostly elderly.

850 will die from OBESITY

700 will die from medical errors

150 will die from Flu/Pneumonia

80 will die from Homicide

80 will die in car accidents




Here is the list from the end of 2016 if interested in comparing
United States of America
from Jan 1, 2017 – Dec 31, 2017 (11:36:39 AM)

Abortion*: 1090465
Heart Disease: 613479
Cancer: 590862
Tobacco: 349505
Obesity: 306566
Medical Errors: 251098
Stroke: 132915
Lower Respiratory Disease: 142741
Accident (unintentional): 135861
Hospital Associated Infection: 98860
Alcohol: 99859
Diabetes: 76380
Alzheimer’s Disease: 93409
Influenza/Pneumonia: 55149
Kidney Failure: 42702
Blood Infection: 33417
Suicide: 42713
Drunk Driving: 33760
Unintentional Poisoning: 31713
All Drug Abuse: 24970
Homicide: 16775
Prescription Drug Overdose: 14979
Murder by gun: 11477
Texting while Driving: 5981
Pedestrian: 4993
Drowning: 3909
Fire Related: 3495
Malnutrition: 2768
Domestic Violence: 1458
Smoking in Bed: 779
Falling out of Bed: 598
Killed by Falling Tree: 149
Lawnmower: 68
Spontaneous Combustion: 0

Totals of all categories are based upon past trends documented below.



I am being completely weaned off my meds, & suspect I will kill myself with the amount of pain I am in, & will be by the time this is over (the wean that is). Already can’t function.

My husband committed suicide after being abandoned by his pain dr.

Please pray for me as I am on the brink of suicide! I don’t want to die but can’t handle the pain anymore! The doctor that I am currently seeing will not give me enough pills to last all month every month… I have to wait until Oct to get in with a pain management doctor whom I already know by others that I know sees this doctor that he will help me, need prayer to hold on until oct… I keep thinking of my family who needs me hear.

“We just lost another intractable member of our support group two nights ago. She committed suicide because her medications were taken away for interstitial cystitis (a horribly painful bladder condition) and pudendal neuralgia, both of which she had battled for years

D D., journalist and prescribed fentanyl patient for a dozen years joined me on air last weekend with her husband and spoke of her suicide plan should the only relief from constant agony be heavily reduced or taken away.

I was told last Friday that my Dr. will be tapering my meds again . When I told him I didn’t think my body could take another lowering he stated ” it wasn’t my
License on the line”, I stated ” no , but it’s my life on the line”!!!!! I can not continue to live this way . I can not continue to suffer in agony when my medications and dose where working just fine before and I was a productive member of society . I can no longer take this. I have a plan in place to end my life myself When I am forced to reduce my Medications again . I just can’t do it anymore .

On Friday at around 9 p.m. U.S. Navy veteran Kevin Keller parked his red pickup truck in the parking lot at the Wytheville Rite-Aid, walked across the grass and stood in front of the U.S. Veterans Community Based Outpatient Clinic next door.

Sick and tired of being in pain, he pulled out a gun, shot a hole in the office door, aimed the gun barrel at his head and ended his hurt once and for all.

As a longterm pain patient with a current unsupportive pain dr, I just thought I’d share the reality of the position I’m in right now…

I’m in very bad pain all the time for very legit and well documented reasons. My pain dr however never gives me enough meds to help me. He just keeps reducing them, which is causing me to be in even more pain and suffer so much more. My quality of life also continues to go downhill at the same time. I was just given a letter by him recently too about some study indicating an increase in deaths if you take opioids and benzos. It stated he’s no longer going to give pain meds to anyone who is taking a benzo. I take one, because I have to, for a seizure disorder, not because I want to. He told me to pick one or the other though, plus went ahead and reduced my pain meds some more. He doesn’t seem to care the least bit. I’ve looked hard and so far I can’t find another one to get in to see near me at this time, but I’m desperately still trying. Unfortunately, they’re few and far between here, in addition to the wait for an appointment being long. I’ve even called hospice for help. So far, they haven’t been of much help either, because I don’t have a dr who will say I have six months or less to live. I told them either choice my pain dr is giving me is very inhumane, so I’d rather just quit eating and drinking, to the point where I pass away from that, while I get some kind of comfort care from them. I don’t really want to though, although I do have a long list of some very bad health problems, including a high probability that I have cancer and it’s spread. Am I suicidal? No. Will I be if my pain and seizure meds are taken away. Highly likely. I never ever saw this coming either. I don’t have a clue what to do and the clock is ticking, but I’m still fighting for an answer. So far, I can’t find not even one dr to help me though. Not one. I know my life depends on it, but at what point will these drs let my suffering become so inhumane that I just can’t take it anymore. I just don’t know right now. It’s a very scary place to be in for sure. That I do know.

The patient was being denied the medicine that had been alleviating his pain and committed suicide because, “he couldn’t live with the pain anymore. He could not see a future. He had no hope. He had no life.”

I am a chronic pain patient who has been on fairly high doses of opiates for about nine years now. My dose has been forcibly reduced since the cdc guidelines. I moved to Oregon from Alaska and can’t find a doctor to prescribe my medication. I pray I have the strength not to take my own life!

Zach Williams of Minnesota  committed suicide at age 35. He was a veteran of Iraq and had experienced back pain and a brain injury from his time in service. He had treated his pain with narcotics until the VA began reducing prescriptions.

Ryan Trunzo committed suicide at the age of 26. He was an army veteran of Iraq. He had experienced fractures in his back for which he tried to get effective painkillers, but failed due to VA policy. His mother stated “I feel like the VA took my son’s life.”

Kevin Keller, a Navy veteran, committed suicide at age 52. He shot v after breaking into the house of his friend, Marty Austin, to take his gun. Austin found a letter left by Keller saying “Marty sorry I broke into your house and took your gun to end the pain!” Keller had experienced a stroke 11 years earlier, and he had worsening pain in the last two years of his life because VA doctors would not give him pain medicine. On the subject of pain medication, Austin said that Keller “was not addicted. He needed it.”

Bob Mason, aged 67, of Montana committed suicide after not having access to drugs to treat his chronic pain for just one week. One doctor who had treated Mason was Mark Ibsen, who shut down his office after the Montana Board of Medical Examiners investigated him for excessive prescription of opioids. According to Mason’s daughter, Mason “didn’t like the drugs, but there were no other options.”

Donald Alan Beyer, living in Idaho, had experienced back pain for years. He suffered from  degenerative disc disease, as well as a job-related injury resulting in a broken back. After his doctor retired, Beyer struggled without pain medicine for months. He shot himself on his 47th birthday. His son, Garrett, said “I guess he felt suicide was his only chance for relief.”

Denny Peck of Washington state was 58 when he ended his life. In 1990, he experienced a severe injury to his vertebrae during a fishing accident. His mother, Lorraine Peck, said “[h]e has been in severe pain ever since,” and his daughter, Amanda Peck, “said she didn’t remember a time when her dad didn’t hurt.” During the last few years of his life, Peck had received opiates for his pain from a Seattle Pain Center, until these clinics closed. After suffering and being unable to find doctors who would help with his pain, Peck called 911. Two days later, Peck was found dead in his home with bullet wounds in his head. A note found near Peck read: “Can’t sleep, can’t eat, can’t do anything. And all the whitecoats don’t care at all.”

Doug Hale of Vermont killed himself at the age of 53. He had experienced pain from interstitial cystitis, and decided to end his life six weeks after his doctor suddenly cut off his opiate painkillers. He left a note reading “Can’t take the chronic pain anymore” before he shot himself in the head. His doctor said he “was no longer willing to risk my license by writing you another script for opioids”  (see attachment A for details of the problem as relyed by his wife Tammi who is now 10 months without a husband as a direct result of the CDC guidelines to prevent deaths)Bruce Graham committed suicide after living with severe pain for two years. At age 62, Graham fell from a ladder, suffering several severe injuries. He had surgery and fell into a coma. After surgery, he suffered from painful adhesions which could not be removed. He relied on opioid painkillers to tolerate his pain, but doctors eventually stopped prescribing the medicine he needed. Two years after his fall, Graham shot himself in the heart to end the pain.

Travis Patterson, a young combat veteran, died two days after a suicide attempt at the age of 26. After the attempt to take his own life, Patterson was brought to the VA emergency room. Doctors offered therapy as a solution, but did not offer any relief for his pain. Patterson died two days after his attempted suicide.

54-year-old Bryan Spece of Montana  killed himself about two weeks after he experienced a major reduction in his pain medication. The CDC recommends a slow reduction in pain medicine, such as a 10% decrease per week. Based on information from Spece’s relative, Spece’s dose could have been reduced by around 70% in the weeks before he died.

In Oregon, Sonja Mae Jonsson ended her life when her doctor stopped giving her pain medicine as a result of the CDC guidelines.

United States veterans have been committing suicide after being unable to receive medicine for pain. These veterans include Peter Kaisen,Daniel Somers, Kevin Keller, Ryan Trunzo, Zach Williams, and Travis Patterson

A 40-year-old woman with fibromyalgia, lupus, and back issues appeared to have committed suicide after not being prescribed enough pain medicine. She had talked about her suicidal thoughts with her friends several times before, saying “there is no quality of life in pain.” She had no husband or children to care for, so she ended her life.

Sherri Little was 53 when she committed suicide. She suffered pain from occipital neuralgia, IBS, and fibromyalgia. A friend described Little as having a “shining soul of activism” as she spent time advocating for other chronic pain sufferers. However, Little had other struggles in her life, such as her feeling that her pain kept her from forming meaningful relationships. In her final days, Little was unable to keep down solid food, and she tried to get medical help from a hospital. When she was unable to receive relief, Little ended her life.

Former NASCAR driver Dick Trickle of North Carolina shot himself at age 71. He suffered from long-term pain under his left breast. Although he went through several medical tests to determine the cause of his pain, the results could not provide relief. After Trickle’s suicide, his brother stated that Dick “must have just decided the pain was too high, because he would have never done it for any other reason.”

39-year-old Julia Kelly committed suicide after suffering ongoing pain resulting from two car accidents. Kelly’s pain caused her to quit her job and move in with her parents, unable to start a family of her own. Her family is certain that the physical and emotional effects of her pain are what drove her to end her life. Kelly had founded a charity to help other chronic pain sufferers, an organization now run by her father in order to help others avoid Julia’s fate.

Sarah Kershaw ended her life at age 49. She was a New York Times Reporter who suffered from occipital neuralgia.

Lynn Gates Jackson, speaking for her friend E.C. who committed suicide after her long term opiates were suddenly reduced by 50% against her will, for no reason.  Lynn reports she felt like the doctors were not treating her like a human being (Ed:  a common complaint) and she made the conscious decision to end her life.

E.C. committed suicide quietly one day in Visalia California.  She was 40.  Her friend reported her death.  “She did not leave a note but I know what she did”.  The doctor would only write a prescription for 10 vicodin and she was in so much pain she could not get to the clinic every few days.   We had talked many times about quitting life. Then she left.  She just left.

Jessica, a patient with RSD/CRPS committed suicide when the pain from her disease became too much for her to bear. A friend asserted that Jessica’s death was not the result of an overdose, and that “living with RSD isn’t living.”



















Aliff, Charles

Beyer, Donald Alan

Brunner, Robert “Bruin”

Graham, Bruce

Hale, Doug

Hartsgrove, Daniel P

Ingram III, Charles Richard

Kaisen, Peter

Keller, Kevin

Kershaw, Sarah

Kimberly, Allison

Little, Sherri

Mason, Bob

Miles, Richard

Murphy, Thomas

Paddock, Karon

Patterson, Travis “Patt”

Peck, Denny

Peterson, Michael Jay

Reid, Marsha

Somers, Daniel

Son, Randall Lee

Spece, Brian

Tombs, John

Trickle, Richard “Dick”

Trunzo, Ryan

Williams, Zack

Karon Shettler Paddock  committed suicide on August 7, 2013  http://www.kpaddock.org/


Jessica Simpson took her life July 2017

Mercedes McGuire took her life on Friday, August 4th. She leaves behind her 4 yr old son. She could no longer endure the physical & emotional pain from Trigeminal Neuralgia.


Another Veteran Suicide In Front Of VA Emergency Department

 Depression and Pain makes me want to kill self. Too much physical and emotional pain to continue on. I seek the bliss fullness of Death. Peace. Live together die alone.

 Dr. Mansureh Irvani  suspected overdose victim  http://www.foxnews.com/health/2017/08/18/suspended-oral-surgeon-dies-suspected-overdose.html

Katherine Goddard’s Suicide note: Due to the pain we are both in and can’t get help, this is the only way we can see getting out of it. Goodbye to everybody,”   https://www.cbsnews.com/news/florida-man-arrested-after-girlfriend-dies-during-alleged-suicide-pact/  

Steven Lichtenberg: the 32-year-old Dublin man shot himself   http://www.dispatch.com/news/20160904/chronic-pains-emotional-toll-can-lead-to-suicide  

Fred Sinclair  he was hurting very much and was, in effect, saying goodbye to the family.  http://www.pharmaciststeve.com/?p=21743

Robert Markel, 56 – June 2016 – Denied Pain Meds/Heroin OD  http://www.pennlive.com/opioid-crisis/2017/08/heroin_overdose_deaths.html

 Lisa June 2016  https://youtu.be/rBlrSyi_-rQ

Jay Lawrence  March 2017  https://www.painnewsnetwork.org/stories/2017/9/4/how-chronic-pain-killed-my-husband

Celisa Henning: killed herself and her twin daughters...http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/Mom-in-Apparent-Joliet-Murder-Suicide-said-Body-Felt-Like-It-was-On-Fire-Grandma-Says-442353713.html?fb_action_ids=10213560297382698&fb_action_types=og.comments

Karen Boje-58  CPP-Deming, NM

Katherine Goddard, 52 –  June 30, 2017 – Palm Coast, FL -Suicide/Denied Opioids  http://www.news-journalonline.com/news/20170816/palm-coast-man-charged-with-assisting-self-murder

https://medium.com/@ThomasKlineMD/suicides-associated-with-non-consented-opioid-pain-medication-reductions-356b4ef7e02aPartial List of Suicides, as of 9–10-17

Suicides: Associated with non-consented Opioid Pain Medication Reductions

Lacy Stewart 59, http://healthylivings247.com/daughter-says-untreated-pain-led-to-mothers-suicide/#

Ryan Trunzo of Massachusetts committed suicide at the age of 26  http://www.startribune.com/obituaries/detail/18881/?fullname=trunzo,-ryan-j  

Mercedes McGuire of Indiana ended her life August 4th, 2017 after struggling with agony originally suppressed with opioid pain medicine but reappearing after her pain medicine was cut back in a fashion after the CDC regulations. She was in such discomfort she went to the ER because she could not stand the intractable pain by “learning to live with it” as suggested by CDC consultants. The ER gave her a small prescription. She went to the pharmacy where they refused to fill it “because she had a pain contract”. She went home and killed herself. She was a young mother with a 4 year old son, Bentley. Bentley, will never get over the loss of his mom.

Suicides: Associated with non-consented Opioid Pain Medication Reductions

“Goodbye” Scott Smith: Vet w/PTSD committed murder/suicide. Killed his wife then himself today 11/27/2017


Pamela Clute had been suffering from agonizing back problems and medical treatment had failed to relieve pain that shot down her legs While California’s assisted suicide law went into effect a couple months before Clute’s death, the law only applies to terminally ill patients who are prescribed life-ending drugs by a physician. Clute wasn’t terminally ill

Kellie Bernsen 12/10/2017 Colorado suicide

Scott Smith: Vet w/PTSD committed murder/suicide. Killed his wife then himself today 11/27/2017

  Michelle Bloem committed suicide due to uncontrolled pain

John Lester shot himself on Jan. 8, 2014.

 Anne Örtegren took her life on Jan. 5  

 Debra Bales, 52 – Civilian – January 10, 2018 – Petaluma, CA – Denied Pain Meds/Suicide

Let’s Stop the Hysterical Rhetoric about the Opioid Crisis


President Trump held a meeting earlier this summer with the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), and other advisers to take a deep dive into solving the nation’s worsening opioid overdose problem.

The Trump administration is clearly shifting into high gear on this issue. HHS Secretary Price, for example, agreed with a reporter during the press briefing that followed, when the reporter called it a “national emergency.” Even more disturbing, however, were recent assertions made by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie in a recent interview. Christie, who heads a White House Drug Addiction Task Force, claims that in 2015 doctors prescribed enough opioid painkillers to medicate every American adult for 3 weeks.

If these numbers appear implausible or like they are missing some context, it’s because they are. And the Administration’s resorting to hyperbole creates an atmosphere of panic that is likely to lead to policies that will only make matters worse.

Let’s start with the context-dropping. What does the governor mean by “medicated?” To a practitioner “medicated” means being treated with a medicine in order to achieve a desired result. Does that mean one 5mg oxycodone tablet every 4 hours (6 per day) for 21 days? Some patients are prescribed two 5mg tablets every 6 hours. Or is he talking about 7.5 or 10 mg oxycodone tablets? Maybe he means hydrocodone. That also comes in 5mg, 7.5mg, and 10mg doses and is sometimes prescribed every 4 hours but sometimes every 6 hours. Then there’s hydromorphone (dilaudid), oxycontin, and let’s not forget codeine.

The point is, millions of Americans have genuine, medically necessary reasons to be taking opioids. They make up the vast majority of opioid users and it doesn’t make sense to lump them into the opioid crisis.

And opioid use itself, for medical purposes or otherwise, is indeed decreasing. In July the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported that prescriptions for opioids by health care providers have been coming down. And the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) has reported that nonmedical use of prescription opioids peaked in 2012 and has been steadily dropping.

That’s not to say the problem is resolving itself. Unfortunately deaths from opioid overdose have been steadily increasing, reaching a new peak of 33,000 in 2015. For the first time the majority of those deaths were from heroin overdose, and the death rate from fentanyl overdose comprised over 4,000 of those deaths. Meanwhile, overdose deaths from prescription opioids have stabilized.

With the crisis already this severe, it’s crucial we get the facts right. Frightening and imprecise rhetoric leads to hastily designed policies with unintended consequences, often making matters worse.

Not all solutions are created equal. States have made the opioid antidote naloxone more available to chronic pain patients and to first responders. And more money is being spent on rehab programs. But so far most proposals for dealing with the overdose problem focus on increased surveillance on patients and providers, inducing doctors to prescribe fewer opioids, and making manufacturers cut back on the amount of opioids produced.

No matter how much regulators clamp down on the medical use of opioids the overdose rate grows. Yet the overwhelming majority of overdose victims are not patients receiving opioids for pain. Less than 1% of well-screened patients become addicted to opioids, according to a 2010 Cochrane analysis. A less comprehensive 2015 review from researchers at the University of New Mexico found the addiction rate ranged from 8-12%. And the CDC has cited a recent study showing the risk of overdose in non-cancer patients chronically receiving opioids for pain at less than 0.2 percent.

In fact, it’s fair to say that many of the deaths from opioid overdoses are the result of drug prohibition. Opioids obtained on the black market are often counterfeit and frequently laced with dangerous additives, such as fentanyl and carfentanil. The dosages are unknown or unreliable. Prohibition also increases profits to drug dealers peddling cheaper and more powerful narcotics.

If policy makers in the Trump administration want to effectively address the problem, there are other ways to do it. They should promote “harm reduction” programs, including pilot “heroin maintenance” programs, such as those that have worked successfully in Switzerland, the UK, Germany, the Netherlands, and Canada. They should also take note of recent evidence from Johns Hopkins University, the University of Michigan, and the RAND Corporation that have shown a dramatic decrease in opioid use and overdose rates in states that have legalized marijuana for medicinal use.

The opioid overdose problem requires a calm and reasoned approach, and a willingness to admit to previous policy mistakes. Rhetoric aimed at frightening the public does not foretell a propitious start.

Inside a drug pricing contract.. how pts and pharmacies get financially SCREWED ?

A sign at the headquarters of Express Scripts.


A contract template used by Express Scripts, the largest pharmacy benefit manager in the U.S., provides a window into how pharmacy benefit managers — middlemen that manage drug coverage for businesses throughout the country — steer negotiations with drug companies to benefit their own financial interests.

Why it matters: These benefit managers have a lot of power over the prescription drug coverage people get through their employers, and they’re supposed to negotiate discounts so coverage is cheaper for insurers and employers. If they’re not making it cheaper, there’s less chance people will get relief from high drug prices.


The details: Axios obtained a 36-page Express Scripts contract template from a source who works in the health care industry. Express Scripts and employers use the document as a starting point to determine how medications are paid for and how pharmacy networks work, but the contract usually is not in the public’s view. Since it’s a template, there are no hard numbers or terms of any specific agreements.

The big takeaway: There’s nothing illegal about these contracts. But the language is clearly written with the PBM’s financial interests in mind, and critics say those kinds of provisions can result in lost savings for everyone, especially for small companies and their employees.

“This whole contract is about the undisclosed spreads that they take.”
Susan Hayes, pharmacy benefit consultant

Even some of the largest companies think they are protected because they have in-house and outside attorneys vetting contracts, yet that’s not necessarily the case.

“That’s a little bit like going to Las Vegas and consistently thinking you can beat the house at their own game,” said one source who has worked in the industry for many years. “These PBMs have entire departments of lawyers where this is their game.”

The other side: Express Scripts, which is in the process of being acquired by Cigna in a $67 billion deal, didn’t dispute the contract template was its own. But spokeswoman Jennifer Luddy said in an email the document was “several years old,” although some sources said it appeared to be current.

  • Luddy added that employers are “savvy purchasers of pharmacy benefits” and that these contracts are common: “It is industry standard terminology used by all PBMs, and is well-understood by clients and consultants.”
  • In a follow-up email, Luddy said: “It is clear to us that there are several vocal PBM critics who are eager to provide their biased interpretations of this template contract to serve their own agenda.”

The details: These are some of the major provisions. The contract was explained in interviews with several people who work in or are familiar with the pharmacy benefit industry, most of whom asked not to be named given the sensitivity of the issue and to speak candidly.


  • A primary function of a PBM is to negotiate rebates from drug companies. Most of those rebate dollars flow back to employers (not workers).
  • But Express Scripts collects other rebate-like fees from drug companies that it doesn’t have to pass along to employers.
  • The Express Scripts contract explicitly says “rebates do not include things” like “administration fees” from drug manufacturers, “inflation payments” and numerous types of “other pharma revenue.”
  • “There are so many carve-outs of what they consider a rebate that it’s very murky of what’s being kept and what’s being passed through (to clients),” an industry source said.
  • The contract also says Express Scripts negotiates rebates “on its own behalf and for its own benefit, and not on behalf of sponsor.”

The brand/generic algorithm

  • Multiple people said the “proprietary” algorithm is one of the most important definitions, as it gives Express Scripts full authority to determine whether a drug is brand or generic without being transparent.
  • The algorithm allows Express Scripts to pocket the difference between a brand-drug discount and a generic-drug discount — a major tactic to maximize profits.
  • “This is why they don’t miss earnings,” said one person familiar with the industry.

Payment schedules

  • The “MAC list” and “maximum reimbursement amount” also permit Express Scripts to pay for drugs in a way that is “most advantageous to them,” according to a source.
  • For example, using these different lists of drug costs, Express Scripts can charge its employer clients $15 for a particular medication but pay the pharmacy just $1 for the same medication — and keep the extra money for itself.

Financial disclosures and auditing

  • The last two pages rehash some of the initial definitions, but also reiterate how Express Scripts can collect almost any type of revenue it wants and “may realize positive margin” — code for reaping big profits and not having to share with employers.
  • Employers can choose to have their agreements audited, but they have to get Express Scripts’ approval on what auditor is used.
  • And sometimes they don’t get it. Hayes, a pharmacy benefit consultant who agreed to review the document and speak on the record, said Express Scripts has not allowed her firm to conduct audits.

Go deeper: The first target on drug prices: Pharmacy benefit managers

Update: DocumentCloud removed the contract after receiving a Digital Millennium Copyright Act complaint from Express Script. We’re working on an alternative way to post the full document.

ACLU wants to protect women from being discriminated by healthcare… but only very narrow disease issues ?

Hi Steve –

Religious liberty is not a license to discriminate and harm. Yet Trump’s Department of Health and Human Services wants to let health care providers use their religious beliefs to justify turning away patients in need. This is a betrayal of the department’s own mission, and it could have disastrous consequences – particularly for women and LGBT patients.

The department is taking public comments on this proposed rule – which means they must consider and respond to our opinions. We have a short window to mount overwhelming opposition to this rule and stop it from taking effect.

Raise your voice loud and clear: Leave a public comment and tell Health and Human Services not to put religion over medical standards.

This proposed rule, if it were adopted, could have serious repercussions for patients seeking treatment like abortions, HIV treatment, or gender-confirming surgery to which some people – like extremist Vice President Mike Pence – might object. Here are just some of the ways the proposed rule could hurt patients:

  • Pregnant women experiencing miscarriages or other serious pregnancy complications could be refused abortion care even when the woman’s life is at risk, and even when the fetus has no chance of survival.
  • Health providers could discriminate against transgender patients seeking medically necessary care.
  • Hospital staff could refuse to sign in patients seeking abortions, to assist patients in any way before getting sterilizations, or even provide any information about medical conditions and treatment options.

Submit a public comment now and we’ll deliver it to the Department of Health and Human Services.

The Department of Health and Human Services should be protecting our health, not proposing rules that could hurt the health and lives of women, trans people, LGB people, people living with HIV, and others seeking critical care.

We’ve already taken legal action for patients hurt by similar discriminatory policies – and if this rule goes into effect, then we’ll see the Trump administration in court. But let’s get to work now to stop this license to discriminate in its tracks.

Submit your comment now. We won’t accept a discriminatory regulation that threatens our health and undermines the principles of religious liberty – and we need your help to stop it.

Thanks for taking action,

Louise Melling
ACLU Deputy Legal Director, fighting against discrimination

Sometimes the Journal of the AMA Gets It Wrong! And so do careless journalists.


On March 6, 2018, the Journal of the American Medical Association published a 12-month randomized clinical trial [authors Erin E Krebs, Amy Gravely, Beth DeRonne, Elizabeth Goldsmith, and others] which compared opioids to non-opioid medications for treatment of moderate to severe osteoarthritis and back pain among 240 Veterans Administration patients.  In the days since publication, the study has been picked up by popular online magazines and blogs under blaring, but incorrect, headlines. The trial supposedly “proves” that opioid pain relievers work no better than acetaminophen (Tylenol) or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and that the risks of opioids make them unacceptable in the treatment of these types of pain.

In reality, the trial proves no such thing.  To an informed reader, the study is profoundly flawed on several grounds, despite the considerable effort that seems to have gone into study design and execution:

  • The study addresses types of pain for which opioids have never been a preferred treatment of choice. The first line treatment is anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
  • The study protocols were flawed; the group set up two cohorts of patients in a “practical” trial that offered several medications in sequence until something was found that worked.  About 11% of the patients in the “non-opioid” leg of the trial eventually tried tramadol (brand name Ultram) – an atypical opioid pain medication that was not identified as such in the study.
  • Patients on “non-opioids” were switched between medications an average of four to five times during the year of the study before a medication was found that worked. Patients on opioids either had successful therapy on the first medication tried or were switched only once. This difference was not detailed in the study results.
  • As noted by senior editor Jacob Sullum in a Reason Magazine blog,“… the researchers excluded patients who were on long-term opioid therapy, which means they ignored people who had already found they did not get adequate relief from other treatments. It seems reasonable to assume that people who are currently using opioids to treat chronic pain are doing so because they think these drugs work better for them than Advil or Tylenol, and they may even be right to think that. If you exclude those patients from a study of pain treatment, you are excluding precisely the people who are most likely to get more relief from opioids.”
  • Observations of Stephen Nadeau, MD (a specialist in the treatment of chronic pain) in a private email to the author are also meaningful:“The mean dose of opioid was 21 mg morphine equivalent (MEQ)/day and only 12.6% of patients randomized to the opioid group were on > 50mg MEQ/day. The operational clinical range for opioids used in the [the] treatment of chronic non-malignant pain is roughly 50-1000 mg MEQ/day [and yes 1000 is not a typo]. There are excellent scientific data on this, even as the CDC and others have avidly promoted a “one size fits all” concept and advocated for daily dosage of <90 mg MEQ (resulting in untold suffering and many deaths in the 1.6 million people with chronic pain and on doses of >90 mg MEQ/day).

    “Variability in opioid dosing requirement is related to genetic variations in the mu-1 opioid receptor gene and to variability in opioid metabolism.  Thus, the doses used in the Krebs trial were unlikely to be effective, even for the — on average — moderate pain that characterized this population.  Bottom line conclusion:  insufficiently titrated doses of opioids are not superior to non-opioid alternatives in the treatment of chronic nonmalignant pain. We have known this for decades.”

    “Three different antidepressants were specifically noted as alternatives for pain treatment in the non-opioid group. Just over 25% of the patients in this trial were at least moderately depressed. However, the authors do not provide data on antidepressant use in the two groups — a key omission. Antidepressants are highly effective in treatment of pain and can reduce the dose of opioids needed.  Differences in outcome between the two groups relating to opioid use could have been masked by the use of antidepressants in the non-opioid group.

The bottom line is that the study seems to have set up to give a predetermined result: to discredit opioids in favor of NSAIDs and Tylenol.  It was a bit like staging a race between some contestants in leg-irons versus others who ran after taking steroids for months.  

Any of these biases alone should have disqualified the study from publication in JAMA, but the fact that three of them are found in the same paper raises suspicions, and rightly so. The fact that JAMA editors let this piece see the light of day should have us all questioning the integrity and/or standards of the journal. 

The CDC guidelines were published about two years ago and we are seeing a growing list of evidence that the CDC was being deceitful in coming to the conclusion that were included in their guidelines.

At first the members of the “special CDC committee” that were to compile the guidelines were to be kept “confidential”, but they didn’t last long. At least one of the committee members was known as a Medical College Professor that was well known as not being a proponent of treating chronic pain with opiates.

Another committee member was reportedly had financial interest in rehab centers.

It has been reported that some/most of the studies that the committee used to come to their conclusion were rated on a “creditable scale” of 3’s & 4’s.. where “1” is excellent and “4” being rated as unreliable “crap”

The final guidelines were released referencing opiate conversion tables  that all have the same or similar “fine print cautions”:  Published equianalgesic ratios are considered crude estimates at best and therefore it is imperative that careful consideration is given to individualizing the dose of the selected opioid. Dosage titration of the new opioid should be completed slowly and with frequent monitoring. 

There is no reference in the guidelines to make exceptions – dosage adjustments – in regards to the pt’s CYP-450 opiate metabolism status.

It has now come to the surface that the CDC has overstated opiate related deaths   a document that admits that the CDC has overcounted “prescription opioid deaths”  https://edsinfo.wordpress.com/2018/03/18/cdc-over-counting-rx-opioid-overdose-deaths/

One has to ask… how many more studies are going to be released/published … that are created with manipulated data to arrive at a predetermined conclusion, and these same studies will be accepted by many as “gold standard results” and in turn base their decisions, policies and other things that will have good/bad impacts on those pts dealing with chronic pain ?



Pain meds shortage changing how North Texas patients are treated


His pain has eased now, but two weeks ago, “It was excruciating. I’d say it was about an 8 [out of 10 ], when they were asking me at the hospital.”

Several North Texas hospitals are acknowledging a shortage in powerful pain medications.

It is a nationwide shortage, believed to be caused in large part by a move the Drug Enforcement Administration made to combat opioid abuse.

According to W. Stephen Love, President and CEO of the Dallas-Fort Worth Hospital Council, in 2017 the DEA lowered the limits regulating how much of these drugs pharmaceutical manufacturers can produce.

 “They were doing that to be part of a solution,” Love explained. “The DEA recognized that all of us have to be working on this opioid crisis.”

The result is a change in the way patients like Gilbert Cavello are treated.

His pain has eased now, but two weeks ago, “It was excruciating. I’d say it was about an 8 [out of 10], when they were asking me at the hospital.”

Cavello is paralyzed from the chest down and is prone to bladder infections. He says the last infection was terrible, and his treatment was different.

“Usually, they automatically start me on antibiotic and then, to ease pain, they put me on Dilaudid, but this time they put me on morphine and it wouldn’t help, it wouldn’t last,” he said.

Gilbert was a patient at UT Southwestern Medical Center, one of the North Texas hospitals experiencing the shortage. Particularly drugs such as Dilaudid, fentanyl and morphine are in short supply.

Love says doctors he’s spoken with are working closely with pharmacists, clinical staff and nurses to coordinate pain management. Parkland Hospital, UT Southwestern and Methodist Health System say staff are transitioning patients to oral medication when appropriate, as pills are more readily available than those that are intravenously delivered.

Love said he believes hospitals are also being more candid with patients.

“Probably, in some ways, the pendulum may have swung too far as far as trying to keep the patient experience extremely pain free,” Love said. “We want it to be pain-free but in the same token we want it to be done in a very responsible way.”

Love says the shortage could potentially ease if the DEA adjusts the production limits.

 But, changing patients’ expectations could take time.

“People need it, especially those in severe pain like me,” Cavello said.

Illegal opiate OD’s increasing and Congress is still looking at decade old data to find solutions ?

House Energy and Commerce Committee grills DEA chief over free flow of opioids


The acting director of the Drug Enforcement Administration said a database that monitors the flow of powerful prescription painkillers from manufacturer to distribution point was compiled manually during the height of the opioid crisis, making it a reactive, not proactive, tool.

The information contained in the drug-reporting database, known as ARCOS, is key to figuring out how many painkillers were distributed to pharmacies across the country from around 2006 to 2010. The data is confidential, but some information that has been released and analyzed is staggering: In two instances, millions of pills were shipped to pharmacies in tiny West Virginia towns.

Members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, who spent two hours aggressively questioning acting DEA director Robert W. Patterson in Washington on Tuesday, wanted to know how so many pills flowed freely, creating conditions for the opioid crisis, and why, they said, the DEA hasn’t been forthcoming with information about how it handled opioids.

“Your agency doesn’t appear to be willing to aggressively try to help us solve, or at least deal with, this crisis,” Rep. Joe Barton (R-Tex.) said. Time, he told Patterson, is of the essence. “You just remember 80 people a day are dying because of legal prescription drugs. Remember that.”

Patterson, who has been acting director since October, said the agency has modernized how it uses the ARCOS data in recent years. It is now computerized, and the DEA has the ability to paint a fuller picture of how many pills are being shipped by also analyzing data from state prescription-drug-monitoring programs and the Department of Health and Human Services. Drug distributors are responsible for reporting their data to the DEA.

Patterson said that the modernization of the database has allowed it to be used in a “much more proactive manner” than in the past. He also said that some anomalies cannot be spotted using the database alone — it needs to be employed in concert with other data.

“I can say repeatedly in ’08, ’09, ’10, we did not use this data in the way that we are now using it, and I think that’s the key,” Patterson said. “Where we fell short, we’ll take responsibility for it.”

When asked, Patterson said that the same thing would not happen today.

“What we wish to do . . . is stop public harm,” he said.

Committee members expressed extreme frustration with the DEA, claiming that the agency dragged its feet in turning over documents and redacted many of those it did give up.

“Your agency needs to be turned upside down,” Rep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.) said. “There is no doubt there is an abject failure in the DEA going back 10 years.”

As Rep. Raul Ruiz (D-Calif.), a medical doctor, said of the agency: “You screwed up.”

The agency also questioned Patterson as to why there was a decrease in orders preventing pharmacies or doctors that were suspected of rogue prescribing from dispensing opioids. Patterson said it was, in some cases, because U.S. attorneys asked that they complete criminal cases before shutting down the pharmacies. The names and the locations of the prosecutors were not specified.

“People continued to die, die during this period,” Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.) said.

The testimony came during a week when Washington is focused on the opioid crisis. The Energy and Commerce Committee will hear more than 20 bills on opioids this week. On Monday, President Trump laid out his plan to solve the opioid crisis, which was filled with tough talk but few details on how he plans to carry it out.

Trump’s plan includes executing some drug dealers, while also pledging to hold pharmaceutical companies accountable for their role in fostering addiction. He said he wants to cut the number of opioid prescriptions by one-third nationwide but did not lay out a blueprint for getting there.

When Trump called for eliminating drug dealers, he said he wants to “get tough” on them, an approach that has alarmed some public-health experts.

Trump’s administration still has not filled numerous vacant positions that deal with the opioid crisis. Patterson is the DEA’s acting director. Trump named Jim Carroll, who worked in the White House Counsel’s Office, to be director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, but he is only in an acting capacity and his nomination has not been sent to the Senate.

As Trump calls for prescription drug monitoring, N.H. stuck in ‘initial phase of maturity’


Tucked within President Donald Trump’s latest proposal to address the opioid epidemic – unveiled Monday in Manchester – is support for a somewhat obscure initiative: prescription drug monitoring programs.

The programs, administered by states, collect prescription information for patients. Pharmacists and doctors are required to participate; the resulting database allows physicians and administrators to screen for patients abusing prescriptions, “doctor shoppers” and complicit doctors.

It’s an approach with wide backing in the medical community, and Trump is hoping to expand it. A written version of the president’s plan – released by the White House on Sunday – seeks to leverage federal money to build a state-to-state, “nationally interoperable prescription drug monitoring program network.”

In New Hampshire, though, that might be easier said than done. The state’s program, approaching its sixth year, is still working to find its footing.

A critical audit by the Legislative Budget Assistant in December found a range of shortcomings from the nascent program. The program is performing its most basic function – collecting and storing prescription data – but it isn’t meeting its loftier goals of analyzing and reporting trends to guide policy, the audit found. Reports so far have been incomplete or misleading, and oversight is poor.


After becoming law under Gov. John Lynch in 2012 and four more years under Gov. Maggie Hassan’s watch, the program was stuck in an “initial phase of maturity,” the audit concluded.

Now, leadership at the state Board of Pharmacy is scrambling to implement changes. In a compliance report presented to the legislative Fiscal Committee on Friday, the board said it was rushing to meet the budget assistant’s recommendations, 26 in all.

Policies are being rewritten. Software is being brought up to speed. “We’ve moving right along with the audit response,” said Michael Bullek, administrator of the board.

But even with a newfound focus, the program is far from up to snuff. Actually building the infrastructure to meet its statutory obligations – the analyses and reports – could take up to 18 months.

Exactly what went wrong with the program’s development has been tough to narrow down. According to operators involved, troubles for the program began early. Initiated in the final months of Gov. John Lynch’s tenure, the program was from the outset “underfunded, understaffed and overregulated,” Bullek said.

“I’ve been involved in every step of the way with the process, and there’s been a lot of pitfalls and roadblocks with the legislation,” Bullek said.

One of them was a provision preventing the program from holding prescription records longer than six months, severely hampering its abilities to analyze, he said.

A spokeswoman for Sen. Maggie Hassan – who as governor oversaw four of the program’s first six years – pointed to financial constraints.

“When the program was established in law under Governor Lynch, the Legislature failed to provide sufficient funds to implement it, setting up the program for challenges,” spokeswoman Ricki Eshman said. Eshman added that Hassan had pressed for technological upgrades for the program as governor, as well as improved prescription training for physicians.

“Over the last several years, New Hampshire’s program has been expanded a number of times, and it is clear from the report that it still has work to do to reach full maturity,” she said.

And there was a simpler problem, according to Bullek: “We didn’t buy the right software program initially. It didn’t meet the need.”

Regardless of the cause of the deficiencies, the consequences have been sharp. Presented with the audit in December, lawmakers on the Fiscal Committee were openly frustrated.

“We’re all struggling to understand why the program has not been administering data,” Sen. Andy Sanborn, R-Bedford, said at the time.

Now, Bullek says much has changed since the program began. For one, the Legislature lifted its six-month cap in 2016, freeing the Pharmacy Board to begin carrying out effective data analysis. And the program took on a new software vendor last summer, expanding its ability to process data, Bullek said.

And on Friday, the Fiscal Committee approved the addition of a new staff position: a data analyst.

Presented with the updates, Rep. Neal Kurk, chairman of the Fiscal Committee, appeared encouraged – to a point.

“I think you’re making very important strides in terms of the issues that the audit brought up,” he said Friday. “We’re looking for more, with respect.”

This just shows how “out of touch” that the Trump administration is…  back in 2005 Congress pass a bill and Bush (43) signed into law the National All Schedules Prescription Electronic Reporting (NASPER) Act  http://nasper.org/. But after Congress passed this bill .. they failed to provide funding to implement and run it… in 2016 Congress introduced the bill  S.480 – National All Schedules Prescription Electronic Reporting Reauthorization Act of 2015 and it failed to pass. This act was to provide funding for the NASPER ACT, but it failed to get passed.

Could these to failures to get a National PMP be a direct result of the 49 states — that has a state operated PMP – not wanting to give up the budgets and staffing that comes along with operating one at the state level.

Also with 48 other states operating their own PMP programs.. why did NH have to start from scratch and try to re-invent the wheel.  Surely, one of those 48 states would have a functioning and mature PMP program.

Pseudo-facts, fake news, OR… just PLAIN LIES ?

The CDC Quietly Admits It Screwed Up Counting Opioid Pills


Here’s the title of an opinion piece in the April issue of the American Journal of Public Health, which was published by four authors at the CDC:

“Quantifying the Epidemic of Prescription Opioid Overdose Death” 

I don’t like the title very much. It (intentionally, no doubt) says approximately zero about what contained within the article, which is mighty revealing. Since I’m nothing if not helpful, I thought I’d suggest a more candid title:

“We at the CDC Really F########ed Up and Here is Our Pathetic Attempt to Disguise it”

Then it gets downright hilarious. Check out this disclaimer. It’s a real beauty:

“Note. The findings and conclusions of this editorial are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”

Really? So if I have this right, four people working for the CDC are allowed to write an opinion piece without any fear of jeopardizing their jobs. Who would have thought that federal agencies were so tolerant of employee dissent?? How about this one? Would the following opinion piece plus a disclaimer fly?

“The CDC Sucks” 

“The findings and conclusions of this editorial are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which may or may not suck.”

I think not. So let’s take a look at what’s really in what is, in fact, a pathetic mea culpa, with a side order of stealth. 

Halfway through the first sentence, it is clear that these guys are repeating the same old crap:

“In 2016, 63,632 persons died of a drug overdose in the United States; 66.4% (42,249) involved an opioid.”

Why do I suspect that the CDC would be absolutely gleeful if reporters read only the first sentence and then wrote their same old crap? After all, it is much easier than actually reading the paper and seeing what’s really in there. But if you bother to read it it doesn’t take long until the funny business starts.

First, the authors state that there are (at least) two ways to count opioid deaths. And the CDC has been doing it wrong (emphasis mine):

Traditionally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and others have included synthetic opioid deaths in estimates of “prescription” opioid deaths. However, with [fentanyl] likely being involved more recently, estimating prescription opioid–involved deaths with the inclusion of synthetic opioid– involved deaths could significantly inflate estimates.

Shocking! Except that I have written numerous pieces (1) which conclude exactly this: By combining fentanyl deaths with those from prescription drugs automatically skews the results. The stats from the CDC have been BS all along. They are now sheepishly admitting it, but not until the BS numbers were already used to formulate the god-awful policy which is now plaguing millions of us. All based on a bunch of lies.

It doesn’t take long to find data in the article that makes the CDC and its flunkies (2) look pretty bad. Let’s start with Table 1. The center column (green circle and arrow) represents the “traditional” method that the CDC used to count deaths. Note that the number doubled between 2013 and 2016. Those damn pills are stone cold killers, just like we’ve been told all along, right? No. Not right.

The other columns tell us why. The left column (blue) represents the number of deaths when the “conservative definition” (make that “correct definition”) is used. The data in this column no longer includes deaths from “fentanyl” (“fentanyl” in this instance meaning illicit fentanyl and its analogs – synthesized in Chinese labs, not pharmaceutical fentanyl). Once “fentanyl” (red column) is removed from a category in which it should never have been in in the first place, all of a sudden, the number of deaths drops by half. That little “a” has a big meaning. This “a” explains why fentanyl is erroneously lumped in with the others.

a “Natural opioids include morphine and codeine, and semisynthetic opioids include drugs such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, hydromorphone, and oxymorphone. Methadone is a synthetic opioid. Synthetic opioids, other than methadone, include drugs such as tramadol and fentanyl.”

Table 1. (Left) A “new” method of categorizing opioid OD deaths includes only prescription drugs. (Center) The previous method included heroin and fentanyl, which automatically skewed the statistics. (Right) Deaths from illicit fentanyl.  Modified from American Journal of Public Health (AJPH) April 2018


It is a bit baffling that heroin is not mentioned in footnote a. Especially since CDC data show that there were 15,469 opioid overdose deaths in 2016 (3). It is safe to assume that heroin was included in the data in the center column even though it was not specifically mentioned. It is not clear whether this omission is intentional or an oversight.


Now that we know that the 42,249 deaths that “involved an opioid” do not represent pain pills. If illicit fentanyl and heroin deaths are separated from the fake number we get a new number which is very different (4).


The title of the middle column on Table 1 seems innocent enough: “Natural and Semi-Synthetic Opioids, Methadone and Other Synthetic Opioids.” But it is not. There is a nasty trick buried in a seemingly innocent definition – a false and scientifically absurd distinction between synthetic, semisynthetic (synthesized from a naturally occurring opioid) and naturally occurring opioids. This system of classifying opioids places fentanyl in the first group, heroin in the second, and morphine in the third. Ridiculous. Opioids should be classified either as pharmaceutical (legal) or non-pharmaceutical (illicit) or by their potency.

This false classification would seem to be no more than a trick. By combining legally prescribed opioids with street drugs the CDC has generated phony data that supports its doctrine – that prescription medications are killing people en masse. They are not. Once the fallacy falls away things look quite different (Table 2).

Fentanyl deaths have shot up more than 6-fold in three years while deaths from oxycodone, codeine, morphine, etc. have risen by 18%. That is a very different scenario than what the CDC has maintained and the press has parroted. Yet we continue to battle pills while the real killer isn’t pills, it’s heroin and illicit fentanyl and fentanyl analogs, most of which are far worse than fentanyl itself. Drs. Michael Schatman and Stephen Ziegler also addressed the CDC lies in their 2017 piece in the Journal of Pain Research entitled “Pain management, prescription opioid mortality, and the CDC: is the devil in the data?” The piece is, uh, rather blunt. 

Table 2. (Left) There was a 6.2-fold (520%) increase in fentanyl deaths between 2013 and 2016. (Right) By comparison, deaths from prescription opioid drugs increased by only 18%. 


But it gets even worse. The deaths from pills very often include other drugs, which have a synergistic effect.

It is impossible to tell how many people who died from prescribed pills would have survived had they not taken other drugs along with the opioid. But it is possible to estimate how many of them who died had taken these other drugs. This number is large. For example, in 2015 (Figure 1) about half of the people who died from prescription opioid overdoses had also taken a benzodiazepine (e.g., Valium). 

Figure 1. Benzodiazepines were present in 50% of prescription opioid deaths in 2015. Source: NIH

If benzodiazepines are present in so many opioid OD deaths then surely other drugs must also be frequently found, right? The answer is, of course, yes, but the numbers may astound you. Dr. Haylea Hannah and colleagues from the California Department of Health & Human Services recently published a paper in Online Journal of Public Health Information which examined toxicology data in people in Marin County who had died from any drug poisoning. Here are the findings:

  • Opioids were present 76% of the time
  • Alcohol – 44% 
  • Amphetamines – 24%

Perhaps more interesting:

  • When an opioid was found in the tox screen, alcohol was also found 52% of the time
  • The average number of drugs found all cases was 6 (!)

Once again, it is apparent that deaths from opioids occur from abuse, not use.

The more you dig the more the numbers change, and it’s always in the same direction – the number of overdose deaths from prescription opioid medications, when used properly, is far less than the bogus numbers that have been used by the CDC. Based on all these adjustments, it would not surprise me in the least if 90% of opioid overdose deaths were a result of illicit fentanyl and its analogs, heroin, and the combination of pharmaceutical opioid drugs with other drugs of abuse. Maybe more.

It should be entirely clear that pain patients who use these painkillers correctly and responsibly are not the people who are dying from overdoses. But they are dying – slowly – from having to live in misery that we wouldn’t allow for our pets as the medicines they need to (barely) function are being forcibly taken away. 

It is 2018 and this is the United States. How did we ever get here?

(1) See:

The Opioid Epidemic In 6 Charts Designed To Deceive You

Heads In The Sand — The Real Cause Of Today’s Opioid Deaths

How the feds are fueling America’s opioid disaster

(2) Yes, you guys. You know who I mean.

(3) Source: “Drug Overdose Deaths in the United States 1999–2016“, CDC

(4) The “new” number is not 42,249 minus (fentanyl + heroin). It is much lower but unknown (and unknowable)  because when more than one drug is found it is counted twice. A certain number of fentanyl deaths also involve heroin and the other way around. One cannot simply add or subtract columns because of multiple counting.

I was asked to share

In need of donations to help offset cost of hotel rooms. Please donate anything you can afford to get warriors to D.C? If your bank has Zelle you can send by using my cell number. We’re using venmo for credit cards at no cost. I’m not opposed to a check I can deposit into Bank of America on app. Any questions PM me and know we’re going to speak out for all with chronic pain. We’re not quitting or backing down. Too many lives are at stake and we’ve lost too many already. Take care and God Bless


Sherry Sherman

My cell is 443-406-5968 email Ssgerman1123@outlook.com
(in remembrance of chronic pain patients choosing
suicide after being abandoned by their doctors because
of DOJ and DEA persecution of physicians)
Tuesday, April 24, 2018, 11:00am – 2:00pm
Dept. of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, DC

Wednesday, April 25, 2018, 12:00noon – 2:00pm
U.S. Capitol Building
Washington, DC
Some of us will meet with legislators(or staffers) afterwards to ask them to help us.
America’s In Pain!” – MARCH ON WASHINGTON – “Silent No More!”
Thursday, April 26, 2018, 11:00am – 4:00pm
U.S. Capitol Reflecting Pool
Washington, DC
Suggested Hotels:

Marriot Hotel
1331 Pennsylvania Avenue
14th & E Street
Washington, DC 20004

Courtyard Marriot
900 F Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20004

You can save money and parking by staying at any hotel that is close to the DC Metro Public Transit
Subway System! To get to the DOJ Building, U.S. Capitol Reflecting Pool and the U.S. Capitol Building
get off on the:

Smithsonian Metro Stop —- Blue/Grey/Orange Line



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