June 12, 2017 6:11 pm
Updated: June 12, 2017 9:02 pm

COMMENTARY: Chronic-pain patients’ battle cry answered

Minister of Health Jane Philpott recently spoke with Roy Green about opioids and chronic pain — an interview that has raised the ire of chronic-pain patients and their caregivers.


The battle is being joined.

Chronic-pain patients about whom I have broadcast and written extensively, particularly recently, are preparing to defend themselves.  Defend themselves from unjust insinuation they are dangerously abusing their horrific pain-relieving opioid medicine.

The case made by Canada’s federal Minister of Health for consigning approximately 1.5-million Canadians to choosing between horrific pain or turning to criminal drug dealers was weak and incoherent in my interview with Minister Dr. Jane Philpott.

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Canadians whose only crime is contracting involuntary, terrible, constant pain are having their effective and doctor-prescribed medications reduced and ended entirely.  The pain patient’s choices, then, are limited, from what they have repeatedly and virtually unanimously shared with me.

READ MORE: COMMENTARY: Chronic pain sufferers terrified and (they will tell you) terrorized

In order to obtain zero guarantee to be effective, and ultimately life-threatening unregulated opioids (which may not be opioids at all) they must turn to criminal drug dealers, or for some, suicide.

You may read my previous posts on this and listen to my interview with a Federal Minister of Health, who was clearly shaky and poorly prepared. Repeatedly the Minister credited me with asking “fantastic” questions, though displaying a lamentable absence of ability to answer those “fantastic” queries.

This weekend, you heard a doctor with no such qualms.  And that is because he’s on the side of the chronic-pain patients and definitely challenges the cruel agenda its sales pitchers disingenuously argue is “evidence based.”

Dr. Lynn Webster is the past president of The American Academy of Pain Medicine.  He practices in Salt Lake City, Utah and is responsible for the http://www.ThePainfulTruthDocumentary.com.  Dr. Webster heard my interview with the Minister and read several blog posts.  He requested to participate on the program.

Dawn Rae Downton is a journalist who, in a recent Globe and Mail column, challenged Philpott and declared she will name names as Downton battles chronic-pain demons so excruciating she has a suicide plan in place, should her fentanyl treatments be stopped.  Fentanyl has saved Downton from the violence of chronic pain for a dozen years and without incident. Downton’s column is titled “I don’t use fentanyl to get high. It lets me live without chronic pain.”

READ MORE: Opioid education program

Catherine is a 42-year-old pain patient whose opioid dosages were arbitrarily cut by a doctor she has never met and who has never bothered to speak with her.

Morgan is a 38-year-old chronic pain patient who has tried many different suggested pain-relief regimens. None has worked for her.  She, now too, is contemplating suicide.

I spoke as well with two members of the Niagara Chronic Pain Club in Ontario.  They wrote club members cheered when they heard Minister Philpott struggled with my “fantastic” questions.

There is a growing resolve among Canada’s chronic-pain patients that they will not be targeted and thrown into the abyss.  They are stepping forward in numbers and increasingly not anonymously.  Perhaps some doctors might join them?

READ MORE: COMMENTARY: Dear Federal Minister of Health Jane Philpott: Are chronic pain patients victims of government attack?

You do remember “First, do no harm.”

Also this weekend , Vaden Earle of Hamilton detailed his and his wife’s battle over the past seven years to bring a Haitian child they adopted as an infant to Canada.

Bonice Thomas and Gord Bibby of British Columbia joined me with a follow-up interview concerning the murder and beheading of their brother and cousin Robert Hall by the Islamist terror group Abu Sayaff.  An electronic petition begun by Hall’s family and his fellow murdered Canadian John Ridsdel’s families will be presented in parliament this week, on the first year anniversary of the murder of Hall.  His family is holding Prime Minister Justin Trudeau directly accountable.  Be sure to listen.

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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