Discriminating against chronic pain pts at the corporate level ?


Chronic pain pts are considered part of a protected class under the Americans with Disability act and discriminating under this act is considered a civil rights violation. The CDC guidelines is some 90 pages and apparently Walgreens has found a couple of sentences or paragraphs out of that document that they like…

Here is four quotes from the CDC opiates guidelines that they don’t seem to like:


“The guideline is intended to ensure that clinicians and patients consider safer and more effective treatment, improve patient outcomes such as reduced pain and improved function.”

“Clinicians should consider the circumstances and unique needs of each patient when providing care.”

“Clinical decision making should be based on a relationship between the clinician and patient, and an understanding of the patient’s clinical situation, functioning, and life context.”

“This guideline provides recommendations for primary care clinicians who are prescribing opioids for chronic pain outside of active cancer treatment, palliative care, and end-of-life care.”

Many in healthcare seem to believe that “corresponding responsibility” is a ONE WAY street and all actions under that term should be to reduce/eliminate – at all costs –  the possibility of a pt becoming a substance abuser – even if it means that the valid chronic pain pt has to be denied appropriate pain management care and suffers a reduction in quality of life issues.

I find Ms Polster’s corporate title somewhat ironic — VP Pharmacy Quality Compliance and Patient Safety.   How safe is a pt’s quality of life if they can’t get the amount of medications that they need to optimize their quality of life and pain reduction ? I wonder how many other health/disease issues that they are sending out letters to prescribers … recommending that the pt’s medication be reduced. If they are not… then it would further suggest that Walgreens is practicing corporate civil rights violations on a fairly selective group of pts.

For those pts who are tired of corporations telling your prescriber how to practice medicine and what medications you are entitled to… here is a website to help a pt find a local independent pharmacy who is more likely to work with a pt’s prescriber and the medications they need, instead of interfering with what the pt’s medications needs are.



7 Responses

  1. I’m labeled as one for the 1st time in over 22 years. And am totally upset, appalled, labeled, misunderstood..

  2. I was just dumped by my local Independant pharmacy. I called three others and all refused to fill my script for pain meds. I have been taking the same med for four years prescribed by the same Dr.

    We are losing people! The bell cannot be unrung.

  3. “Chronic pain pts are considered part of a protected class under the Americans with Disability act and discriminating under this act is considered a civil rights violation.”

    Since this is theoretically true, why does the ACLU repeatedly, steadfastly refuse to defend CPPs? Why has the major Oregon Civil Rights defense org continue to refuse to take up any case having to do with CPP disability right? Why is no attorney willing to step in? I and a number of people I know have contacted these people/groups repeatedly, via phone, email, snail mail, & in person. Repeated result: “we choose not to get involved with this issue at this time.”

    And it’s not just the chains; with the entire country leaping onto the anti-opioid zealots’ bandwagon, people are getting dumped by their docs & refused the meds they’ve used responsibly for decades…but no attorney or org will touch us, even those who’ve had to quit working b/c of losing their pain meds.

    I guess our country will just be a much better, greater place when all us CPPs kill ourselves off. That sure seems to be the goal.

    • Do not give these people the satisfaction of having another suicide to use as ammunition against us. I know it’s hard when you’re going through withdrawals. I was there a week ago after being stopped cold turkey. My sister (I have 1 old & 1 younger and we all have chronic pain conditions) told me this and my son said it only takes one voice to be heard. Stay strong and continue to fight.

  4. Anyone else catch the threat? Walgreens pharmacists “may notify appropriate regulatory agencies if prescriptions are refused.” If that is not a clear and direct threat against any prescribing doctor who dare to prescribe over the MME guidelines (which are not supposed to be mandatory by law), then I don’t know what is.

    • So I guess my assumptions are right and the CDC guidelines are just that? I’m new to all of this after being cold turkey a week & a half ago. Needless to say I have learned alot in that time.

  5. Agree. Always have better experiences at Healthmart. Dump Walgreens, CVS, Walmart. Too big, too corporate to give a damn.

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