From The Idiot Factor:
When this opioid campaign began I noticed a clear and sharp problem arising in that people with real pain were going to suffer as the opioid "crisis" led to public hysteria and government overreach. (See: Those in pain did not create any “opioid epidemic”).
I have a friend who has cancer and he is having a hard time finding a doctor who will prescribe needed pain killers. He is in the final stages of lung cancer and doctors are telling him "they are going to faze out opioid drugs." He has a morphine pain pump that no doctor will refill. He has had a prescription for methadone. But now he can't get any doctor to treat him. He has been going through withdrawals for days.
Now USA Today has posted an article: "Chronic pain patients, overlooked in opioid crisis, getting new attention from top at FDA," by Jayne O'Donnell and Josephine Chu. It turns out that there are many pain patience, just as my friend, who are having trouble getting treatment for pain. According to that article:
Chronic pain patients and the groups that represent them say the escalating government response to opioid addiction ignores their need for the painkillers and doctors who will prescribe them, leaving some out of work, bedridden and even suicidal.
I also have posted article in which I was sceptical that all the reported overdoses were not really from people being prescribed medical opioids. (See The opioid epidemic is really a fentanyl epidemic—and we don’t need all the hype). It turns out I was right:
CDC researchers said in an article in April in the American Journal of Public Health that they overestimated the number of Americans who have died of prescription opioid overdoses. Because of inaccurate tracking methods, the CDC said it incorrectly counted many overdoses from illicitly manufactured synthetic opioids such as fentanyl as prescription drug deaths.
The above statement is exactly what I wrote in an article earlier this year. This is not much different from the crack epidemic, in which the police gave young Afro-Americans ridiculously long prison sentences for selling what amounted to smokable cocaine. It was no different than regular cocaine except it can be smoked.
The mainstream news media should no better than to let these campaigns get out of control, but they just don't learn. So much of the "opioid epidemic" is nothing more than fake news.