Saturday May 18, 2013
Lynn Webster, MD Attempts to Discredit Physicians for Responsible Opioid PrescribingMarianne Skolek Salem-News.com
“The proper function of a government is to make it easy for the people to do good, and difficult for them to do evil.” - Daniel Webster, author and orator
(MYRTLE BEACH, SC) - American Academy of Pain Medicine (AAPM) Responds to Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing (PROP) Citizen Petition to the FDA limiting prescribing addictive opioids for long-term non-cancer pain. Is this effort by PROP to save lives in the prescription drug epidemic causing AAPM to attempt to discredit PROP? (Click on link to read PROP's Citizen Petition filed with the FDA) http://www.citizen.org/documents/2048.pdf
On the website of PROP, it states -- "The mission of PROP is to reduce morbidity and mortality resulting from prescribing of opioids and to promote cautious, safe and responsible opioid prescribing practices."
"We have serious concerns about the petition and believe the rationale for the requested changes is seriously flawed, potentially harmful to patients with debilitating pain conditions for whom opioid therapy is indicated, and without substantive scientific foundation,” the AAPM wrote in a letter to the FDA about PROP's Citizen Petition
Members of AAPM's Board of Directors signed the letter and indicated there was no scientific evidence showing that the use of opioids to treat moderate pain was any more or less harmful than prescribing the painkillers for severe pain. It also questioned PROP's request to limit prescriptions to 90 days for the treatment of non-cancer pain. The AAPM is funded by the pharmaceutical industry and they oppose any limitations put on opioid prescribing. “We believe that the adoption of the recommendations in the PROP petition to lower doses or duration would provide a false sense of security for patients and practitioners,” Dr. Lynn Webster, President-Elect of AAPM stated.. “In our view, a more effective means to address this problem would be enhanced prescriber education and adherence to principles of practice, including ongoing monitoring for aberrant behaviors and early signs of addiction.” Reading a daily newspaper in any major city in the U.S. will educate the medical profession on the prescription drug epidemic in addiction and death. And early signs of addiction? Writing opioid prescriptions for long-term non-cancer pain will give any physician the early signs of addiction up front and personal.
Here's where I ask the AAPM and their physicians -- you know the ones under Senate investigation for possibly profiting from pharmaceutical companies such as Purdue Pharma, maker of OxyContin -- by pushing opioids for all levels of pain. Where are the scientific studies conducted by pharma such as Purdue Pharma showing the long-term benefits or risks for the treatment of non-cancer pain with opioids? I'll make it easy for Dr. Webster and his illustrious team of physicians serving on the Board of AAPM -- there are no scientific studies.
“If AAPM wants to defend the right of drug companies to advertise high dose and extended use of opioids for moderate chronic pain as safe and effective, the burden of proof is on them,” said Andrew Kolodny, MD, President of PROP. “We don’t have to prove this. The law requires drug companies to prove that products are safe and effective for use as advertised. It doesn’t require the public to prove that they’re not safe and effective.” “At the end of the day, if FDA implements the label changes we’re requesting, doctors will still be able to prescribe long-term opioids to chronic pain patients who need them and AAPM knows this,” stated Dr. Kolodny.
Dr. Webster was quoted in Newsday in January 2012 as saying about the prescription drug epidemic in the U.S. and Canada -- "I am not sure I would use the word epidemic. There is a public health crisis, but not an epidemic." Webster said critics too often overstate the degree to which people are addicted. Since the Senate Finance Committee is investigating Webster and the American Academy of Pain for their financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry, the Senate may find the statement that we are in a "public health crisis" and "not an epidemic" as relates to the soaring addictions and deaths to opioids around the country interesting. In its response to the FDA pertaining to PROP's Citizen Petition, AAPM had 12 members of their Board of Directors sign the letter. The response expressed the concern that adoption of the three focal points of the PROP petition to limit the dose, the duration and modify the labeling for opioids that are prescribed for non cancerous pain would have unintended societal consequences. Curious about the meaning of what AAPM refers to as "unintended societal consequences?" Societal means "of or relating to society or social relations." Tell that to a family mourning the death of a loved one because they were over-prescribed a dangerous opioid, became addicted and died. Their death according to AAPM is actually due to "social relations."
Curious about the meaning of what AAPM refers to as "unintended societal consequences?" Societal means "of or relating to society or social relations." Tell that to a family mourning the death of a loved one because they were over-prescribed a dangerous opioid, became addicted and died. Their death according to AAPM is actually due to "social relations."
The Executive Board of PROP is as follows:
AAPM Board of Directors
2012 - 2013 Board of Directors
Lynn Webster, M.D., President-Elect of AAPM offers a "fun" and "exciting" program about safe opioid prescribing as shown on the AAPM website and listed as "2012 Safe Opioid Prescribing Course Video Message" -- as every state in the country and Canada reels in addiction and deaths in the tens of thousands. Tell me Dr. Webster, where does the "fun" come into play? Here is Webster's reference to "fun" opioid prescribing - (Click on top video with photo of Webster) http://www.painmed.org/
For some reason after viewing Dr. Webster's video and the AAPM rebuttal to the PROP Citizen Petition, I thought of Hannibal Lecter. May I suggest that when Dr. Webster presents his 2012 Safe Prescribing Course -- you know the "fun and exciting" program, that he serve fava beans and a nice Chianti for lunch.
LP - “Love is like the wind, you can't see it -- but you can feel it.” Nicholas Sparks
Activist for Victims of OxyContin and Purdue Pharma - a criminally convicted pharmaceutical company
_______________________________________Salem-News.com Investigative Reporter Marianne Skolek, is an Activist for Victims of OxyContin and Purdue Pharma throughout the United States and Canada. In July 2007, she testified against Purdue Pharma in Federal Court in Virginia at the sentencing of their three CEO's - Michael Friedman, Howard Udell and Paul Goldenheim - who pleaded guilty to charges of marketing OxyContin as less likely to be addictive or abused to physicians and patients. She also testified against Purdue Pharma at a Judiciary Hearing of the U.S. Senate in July 2007. Marianne works with government agencies and private attorneys in having a voice for her daughter Jill, who died in 2002 after being prescribed OxyContin, as well as the voice for scores of victims of OxyContin. She has been involved in her work for the past 8-1/2 years and is currently working on a book that exposes Purdue Pharma for their continued criminal marketing of OxyContin.
Marianne is a nurse having graduated in 1991 as president of her graduating class. She also has a Paralegal certification. Marianne served on a Community Service Board for the Courier News, a Gannet newspaper in NJ writing articles predominantly regarding AIDS patients and their emotional issues. She was awarded a Community Service Award in 1993 by the Hunterdon County, NJ HIV/AIDS Task Force in recognition of and appreciation for the donated time, energy and love in facilitating a Support Group for persons with HIV/AIDS.
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