January 2019 – A Call for Rational, Safe and Compassionate Opioid Policy.
Primary care and surgery both frequently refer patients to Northern Anesthesia & Pain Medicine for chronic pain management and in particular for help weaning off of chronic opioid therapy. Our reputation in the community is one of holistic/integrative, preventive-focused, biopsychosocial care, with data to back up our methodology (see linked post.)
What we do not stand behind are blanket, cookie-cutter approaches to either pain management or addictionology, and what we adamantly oppose is the intrusion of both government and private non-physician entities (read: corporate lawyers) into the doctor-patient relationship. While opioids are supremely dangerous and overused, an autocratic state where medical decisions are rendered by those without the proper education and credentials, not to mention a therapeutic relationship with the patient may be even worse.
As such I didn't hesitate to sign my colleague Dr. Beth Darnall's call for an urgent re-thinking of public policies on the matter; see the American Academy of Pain Medicine/MedPage Today post explaining why.