Take action: UW Pain and Policy Group

Last week we wrote about the University of Wisconsin’s Pain and Policy Group, which lobbies for the de-regulation of narcotic pain medicine. The group has come under fire for receiving millions of dollars of funding from companies like Purdue Pharma, the maker of OxyContin, according to a new investigation by Journal Sentinel/MedPage.

Some advocacy groups are now calling on Chancellor Biddy Martin to shut down the group. Here’s what to do if you’d like to weigh in:

  1. Email the chancellor or call (608) 262-9946. Here is a sample letter from Pete Jackson, the president of Advocates for the Reform of Prescription Opioids.
  2. Call your U.S. and Wisconsin legislative offices: Sen. Herb Kohl, (202) 224-5653; Sen. Ron Johnson, (202) 224-5325. To find your U.S. Congressional Representative’s office, enter your zip code here. To find your Wisconsin state legislators, go here.
  3. Explain to the staffer who answers the phone that you’’re calling about an article that appeared in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on April 2 about UW’’s Pain and Policy Study Group.
  4. If the staffer is unfamiliar with the article, ask them for their email address so you can send them the link to it.
  5. Explain to the staffer that you’’re calling because you would like their office to help stop UW’s Pain & Policy Group from lobbying for the de-regulation of narcotic pain medicine.
  6. Tell them your personal story.
  7. Ask them if they would be willing to reach out to Chancellor Martin, or if they have any other UW contacts that might be able to help.

About Erin Marie Daly

I’m a freelance journalist based in San Francisco. My book on prescription drug and heroin addiction was published in August 2014 by Counterpoint Press.
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One Response to Take action: UW Pain and Policy Group

  1. Brian says:

    and what about the millions of americans like myself who are suffering from intense disabling pain whose only way to even come close to living a normal life is by the legitimate medical use of opioid medications. Before I went on opiate painkillers for my pain, I would work 4-6 hours a day, and then go home and lay down and sleep for 14-16 hours a day because I was so exhausted from the pain. Why should people with legitimate medical reasons for taking these drugs be prevented from being able to get a prescription for them from a pain management doctor just because a bunch of street junkies are abusing the system? Why are doctors who can prescribe drugs like suboxone, which will get anyone off opioids in 5 days or less with no withdrawl symptoms so hard to find? Because of stupid laws which regulate these substances and scare-tactic groups like you who have doctors so worried about the “junkie” phenomenon that they are not able or allowed by their institutions to prescribe the only medications available on the market to treat that level of pain?

    You are doing so much more harm than good by trying to regultate these drugs more. Now people with severe pain problems who were receiving excellent treatment for their pain are being “kicked off” their meds and left to suffer miserable and pain-ridden lives. Those people will just be forced to turn to even more harmful substances such as heroin for relief, as will street junkies who currently take the less dangerous forms of opioids designed to minimize physical dependance.

    You are so wrong. Wake up and see the damage you are doing.

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