Mayor Bloomberg vs. painkillers

by Walter Olson on January 14, 2013

“So we now have a politician directly dictating medical policy to doctors at city hospitals.” [Radley Balko]

P.S. In the mayor’s view, just as you can’t make an omelet without breaking eggs, so you can’t fight painkiller abuse without overriding doctors’ judgment: “so you didn’t get enough painkillers and you did have to suffer a little bit…. there’s nothing perfect.” [Colin Campbell, Politicker]

{ 4 comments }

1 VMS 01.14.13 at 8:23 pm

Wow! Bloomberg sure shows his medical ignorance in pain management. Physicians who sub-specialize in pain medicine first have to get board certified in anesthesiology and then have to subspecialize in pain management before they can call themselves specialists in Pain Medicine. And believe it or not, narcotic dosing is not a “one size fits all” with respect to pain control.

Although I am not one of these specialists, I know that a tenet of pain medicine is that for chronic pain you have to break the pain cycle and keep the pain from becoming severe at all costs. Because, once the pain becomes severe, the cycle is very difficult to break even by trained specialists. Entering the pain cycle tailspin is not just a matter of suffering a little bit.

Prescription drug abuse is indeed a problem, but it should not be solved at the expense of those in true pain. Bloomberg should stop practicing medicine without a license, and go back t0 grinding the gears of his nanny state. The feds and NYS already have measures to prevent multiple scripts from different physicians to the same person from being filled at different pharmacies. Instead of worrying about narcotics prescribed by a physician, Bloomberg should set up a citywide database to cut down on multiple purchases of Coca Cola by a single individual to ensure his 16 oz. rule is properly enforced.

2 No Name Guy 01.15.13 at 1:56 am

Mr. Bloomberg, you Sir, are an arse of the highest order.

It would be justice for you to reap what ye doth sow. I just hope that your successor in office has more compassion that you do.

What kind of sick, depraved person are you to let…..nay, IMPOSE needless suffering on your fellow man. And all in the name of improving some other man. How many will you kill with the needless suffering?

3 John Fembup 01.15.13 at 8:08 am

It’s a characteristic of journalists to put sensational information at the top of stories, even if it means putting important information at the end. So it seems with this.

The last few paragraphs of the linked NY Times article contain important information that is not prominent in the links provided above. For example, all private hospitals in NYC decided to adopt Bloomberg’s rule voluntarily; the head of NY’s HHC states no one who needs pain medication will be denied; that the new rules don’t apply for cancer patients or others needing palliative care; that the use of e.g., Oxycontin has rapidly declined in emergency rooms anyway. Perhaps the web reaction to this is a bit overblown.

This is worth watching, but as always not worth overreacting.

4 Frank 01.15.13 at 11:19 am

fter suffering a traffic accident recently, I was hospitalized near the site of the accident. During home recovery, I had to travel 50 miles to the trauma surgeon at the hospital to pick up a hard copy scrip.

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