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  • The Pain Patients Bill Of Rights 2004

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    Old 10-14-2005, 07:01 AM   #1
    friendly_one
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    Thumbs up The Pain Patients Bill Of Rights 2004

    THE PAIN PATIENTS BILL OF RIGHTS 2004


    The RIGHT to have it UNDERSTOOD that Chronic Pain is a progressive disease of the nervous system; caused by failure of the body's internal pain control systems. Also to have it understood that pain is a malignancy in the sense that when left untreated, intensity increases and spreads to areas that weren't previously affected, damaging the sufferer's health and functioning.

    The RIGHT to a medical professionals' honest attempt to find adequate, if not aggressive treatment allowing the patient a normal life as much as possible. Also with the understanding, a patient does not have to be incapacitated and covered with bedsores to be suffering in pain.

    The RIGHT therefore, to have an "honest attempt"by a doctor at lowering pain levels, reducing suffering through restoration of functioning in life activities to as close to normal as possible and hopefully arresting and reversing the damage done by chronic pain to the nervous system.

    The RIGHT to be prescribed some form of relief however "short-lived"it might be during our search for a pain specialist that will regularly see us and treat our condition. Pain is the 5th Vital Sign and is by law, to be treated and relieved by those in the medical field.

    The RIGHT to refuse prescriptions of Anti-inflammatory non-opioid medications such as Motrin, Naprosyn, and Vioxx. These medications, called Nsaid's kill 16,500+ patients each year through bleeding from the stomach and toxicity in the liver and kidneys. Might as well shoot us, than allow us to die unmercifully from these deadly meds.

    The RIGHT to not be seen by doctors who begin office visits with frowns, scowls, shaking heads from side to side or any other preconceived negativity towards us. It's rude. It's degrading. And by all rights, should be punishable by law.

    The RIGHT not to be labeled as "doctor shopping" or a "drug seeker" when we change doctors. It's only that we continue to have pain, that we seek out others to treat us. Who doesn't expect answers when seeing a doctor? And who in their right mind doesn't look elsewhere when answers aren't forthcoming?

    The RIGHT to not be lectured about the "dangers" of DEPENDENCY. For patients who truly suffer from intractable, on-going, never-ending pain - who are already dealing with a permanent problem called pain - and for whom the word "euphoria" is more associated with making it through the day withought contemplating suicide, than any effects from medication - never experiencing a "euphoria". In fact, dysphoria and/or depression is observed more typically with the use of narcotics than "euphoria" in the pain patient. Dependence is a physical phenomenon, not a sign of addiction.

    The RIGHT to not be regarded as an "addict" or "druggie" or any other negative derogatory when we dare to ask a medical professional for treatment of our pain. Psychological dependence (addiction) SHOULD NOT be confused with physical dependence.

    The RIGHT not to be judged or viewed with any preconceived notions when we are lucky enough to receive proper pain treatment. After all, proper pain management means "able to function normally". That's all we want- to be normal.

    The RIGHT to no assumptions made if a patient takes medication and appears to be functioning somewhat normal. The assumption that a patient taking opioid medications is automatically an abuser just because with proper treatment they are able to function somewhat normally is PREPOSTEROUS! The GOAL is to get patients to the point where they can function somewhat normally. The concept that you must be all but crippled to qualify for opioid therapy needs to end!

    The RIGHT to be treated and viewed by everyone, as human beings who only want to live like everybody else. Normal, without pain, sharing joys with family, attending church, grocery shopping, taking in a movie, fixing dinner....loving life!


    STANDING TOGETHER FOR ADEQUATE TREATMENT

    Last edited by friendly_one; 10-17-2005 at 02:33 PM.

     
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    Old 10-14-2005, 09:03 AM   #2
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    Re: The Pain Patients Bill Of Rights 2004

    Here Here, that gets my vote!

     
    Old 10-14-2005, 12:01 PM   #3
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    Re: The Pain Patients Bill Of Rights 2004

    Hi Queen, For research purposes, is this part of the mission statement of the APS, I know I have seen and read it, just can't remeber where. You don't have to leave a link that may or may not be deleted, just courious what org created it.

    Here Here 2, Dave

    Last edited by Shoreline; 10-14-2005 at 12:02 PM.

     
    Old 10-14-2005, 04:36 PM   #4
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    Re: The Pain Patients Bill Of Rights 2004

    Hi Dave...I got it from Our Chronic Pain Mission.

     
    Old 10-15-2005, 09:28 AM   #5
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    Re: The Pain Patients Bill Of Rights 2004

    I have read this before but had completely forgotten about it. Thank you for sharing. It is important for all CP patients to understand that we do have a right to treatment as much as anyone else. MizLiz

     
    Old 10-15-2005, 10:12 PM   #6
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    Re: The Pain Patients Bill Of Rights 2004

    Wow!! that is awesome, right on the money, is it a law yet??.

     
    Old 10-16-2005, 09:36 AM   #7
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    Re: The Pain Patients Bill Of Rights 2004

    I'm not sure if it's law or not, I think it's more of a mission statement for chronic pain, like Shoreline mentioned.

    Last edited by friendly_one; 10-17-2005 at 02:35 PM.

     
    Old 10-16-2005, 11:31 AM   #8
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    Re: The Pain Patients Bill Of Rights 2004

    Every PC Patient needs a copy of this. If for no other reason than to give them emotional support during their quest for a "normal" life.

    Not only do the doctors that treat us need to be aware of this but those we deal with on a daily basis; boss, family, social worker.

    I, Personally need to make a copy because "druggie" is the first thing that has come up in my impending divorce. My spouce used to throw those types of hurtful words at me every time we would argue about my pain and inability to do something he wanted to do.

    He has never experienced chronic pain, and even though we don't get along, I hope he neveer does experience it. But I am sorely tired of being called addict just because I have to take narcotics to make it through a day. It gets lonely when yoou think you are the only one who has to put up with this wrongheaded thinking. It also wears you out when you have to fight the daily battle with pain and then defend yourself about the medication you take.

    I am very touchy where the subject of dependence and addiction are concerned. At the beginning of this year I had to stage an interveention with my daughter and remove her child from her care until shegot clean. To visit her in rehab I had to sit through "classes" to teach me what addiction was. I had to keep quiet about the medication I take because I would have been labeled an addict by the very people I paid to help my daughter. They would not have allowed me to visit her and would have lobbied for my grandson to be removed from my care.

    She has been clean for 10 months now and is getting her life together but it was awful having to sit and listen to these "professionals" lump heroin addicts and chronic pain patients in the same category. According to them the only time a person should be treated aggressively for pain is when they are nearing death and hospitalized.

    Chronic Pain is not very well understood but we should all consider that most of us did not understand the scope of chronic pain until we experienced it for ourselves.

    Just a thought.
    The Bard

     
    Old 10-17-2005, 12:24 AM   #9
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    Re: The Pain Patients Bill Of Rights 2004

    Hi Shakes.... print out a copy! Like you said, even if it's just for yourself.

    Last edited by friendly_one; 10-17-2005 at 02:37 PM.

     
    Old 10-17-2005, 05:36 AM   #10
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    Re: The Pain Patients Bill Of Rights 2004

    No doubt everyone here belives in it . But what do we do with this information?

    Ken

     
    Old 10-17-2005, 08:41 AM   #11
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    Re: The Pain Patients Bill Of Rights 2004

    Honestly the wording makes this incapable of turning into a law. Your basically talking about discrimination based n the fact we take opiates or seek pain relief. How could you make a law that prevents frowns, scowls, shaking heads from side to side or any other preconceived negativity towards us. It's rude. It's degrading. And by all rights, should be punishable by law. The RIGHT not to be judged or viewed with any preconceived notions. The same rights that apply to any minority when faced with prejudice or ignorance.


    . People of minority experience these things every day when they go into a predominantly white neighborhood, or store and the sales person rolls their eyes and follows them through the store assuming because they are of a particular ethnic background they are more prone to steal. You can't force someoneís opinion by a law or punish someone for having an opinion that offends us. But you can use the civil court system when civil rights are violated and cause damages. However itís the damages that are hard to prove.

    I think the purpose of this mission statement at best could be properly used if displayed in a PM docs office or Hospital so we at last know we are in a safe haven from preconceived notions and ignorance. I'm sure every minority would like to see something similar on the welcome signs to any particular town they happen to move too or state line they cross. Fortunately the constitution allows freedom of speech, thought an expression and enforcing every part of this mission statement would infringe on everyoneís constitutional rights.

    A far as enforcing something like this or making a this a law canít be accomplished by tossing out the constitution and demanding everyone think the way we donít find offensive. The only recurs I see is civil litigation of existing laws that protect us from slanderous statements in front of groups of people, such as the ER, the pharmacy, a docs waiting room etc. If an ER doc calls you a drug addict, puts it in your chart and calls your treating physician or GP which causes a change in your treatment. You might have consequences of the slanderous statement to ask a civil court for damages if your able to prove that you incurred measurable damages. If enough cases were made public, this might spark change. Someone mentioned reporting poor treatment to the ACLU. This group has more experience in handling such cases, but we need to set legal precedents were docs or pharmacists have lost civil litigation due to this type of discrimination we all face and fear litigation for such actions. When it comes to damages, we need to be able to prove that someoneís actions or slanderous statements did indeed cause damage more than hurt feelings.

    Communism and socialism tried to enforce public thinking which was doomed to fail, you can't control the way someone thinks, but you can bring civil litigation if their words or actions cause you harm or damage. For example, You are asked to step down as president of your PTA because another member of the PTA heard a doc in he ER call you a drug addict and drug seeker that was looking for a buzz. Slander is tough to prove it caused a loss, but certainly there are circumstances where this type of thinking has prevented promotion, or even termination of employment.

    You have to be able to show a specific damage you can prove was caused by words spoken out of prejudice or ignorance in front of other people that caused measurable damages. Loss of reputation, loss of credibility that harmed someoneís business causing financial loss or ability to participate or work in an environment where the thought of a "Junkie" caused a measurable loss. Business losses or prejudicial treatment based on the loss of reputation and credibility from slanderous words would be another example.

    Until some type of case like this makes it to civil court, docs and pharmacist will continue to have their opinion, raise their eyebrow, roll their eyes and make unfounded accusations. I'm not a legal expert but I can't imagine how you can enforce the way someone is going to think, only prove their thinking and words spoken caused you some type of loss.

    This Patients bill of rights is a civil rights issue and one of the toughest to prove damages in court but certainly there are cases. For now the best we can do is file a complaint with the JCAHO, the creators of the "5th vital sign mandate". Contact the ACLU or a civil rights attorney if you feel you have been discriminated against and make complaints to the Dept of health and human services, your insurance carrier and the AHCPR if you feel you have been mistreated by a hospital or ER.

    Personally I would love to see that on the wall of every PM docs office, but I don't see how that document could be turned into a law. There are laws against discrimination and slander and that's where a civil rights attorney or the ACLU would come in handy. Certainly many cases have risen to the level of slander but you still have to prove damages beyond hurt feelings.

    Itís not that I donít agree with the mission statement, Ití just canít be enforced by a law to change the way people think, react or respond. We go to a doc to get their opinion, we may not like that opinion but it doesnít mean they have committed a crime and people shouldnít fear giving their opinion in a free country. That is part of what makes our system and freedom of speech better than others. Personally I think it needs a little more meat to educate people about our plight and the way we are treated, not just what we want. Believing otherwise is a form of prejudice and could certainly be skillfully argued in court if this type of prejudice is used against you in a child custody case or case of wrongful termination of employment or where any other negative sanctions or treatment are enforced based on prejudice.

     
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