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Pill mills

pain.gifThe scene is a beauty parlor. Two women of a certain age are seated next to each other under the dryers.

"My son the doctor," says the first, "has a decent surgical practice. He's a good provider for his family, but wishes he could make more. You know how it is with Medicare--they never reimburse enough, and the insurance companies always stick it to him. Whether he likes it or not, a lot of his work ends up being pro bono.

"Nevertheless, he still finds time once a year to travel to third world countries with Doctors Without Borders to repair cleft palates on underprivileged children."

The other puts down her magazine and smiles broadly. "My son the doctor," she replies, "finished med school, did his residency in pharmacology, and paid off his student loans in one year. He works in a pain clinic on a per-patient contract basis, and makes over a million per by providing pain relief to patients all over the country. In cash, I might add."

Both women must be so proud.

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Good cartoon-Very clever of you to put Rush "Limbecile'S" housekeeper in the crowd...

Pain clinics help to make some medicines easier to purchase. But the government still needs to create price controls to prevent these pill mills from gouging people in their time of need.

Lets bite the bullet; as a society and accept that drugs should be legalized at least this way they would be controlled. We could use these doctors one for health screening, two for a source of tax revenue and third making treatment easy to get if the patient wants it. Oh I forgot we would bankrupt the drug cartels in a mater of weeks.

pain is invisible and like all things invisible its truth can't be determined. what stops me from claiming pain to feed a pain pill addiction? a crackdown on pain mills will result in it manifesting elsewhere as long as there is demand. the main reason this is happening is to gain the use of drugs legally. on 10/28/09 a wall street j report claims that in 1991 there were 40 million opiates prescriptions. by 1991 it was 180 million. hsa pain increased, i doubt it. lawenforcement crack down on other illegal drugs is the reason for this, plain and simple.did m jackson who kept his personal doctor as pill mill dispenser face drug charges? understand the problem?


Right Chan, unregulated is the problem. Because, EVERYTHING the US government does runs effectively, efficiently and at its very best! Just like the post office, AmTrac, Congress..... get real, dude.

What about the drug companies? They have the resources and thus the data to know that a substantial portion of the pills they produce are being missused. Why no talk about holding them accountable? Why are they permitted to keep producing and marketing pills in this quantity? I like profits, and I even like them for drug companies. But in this instance we need to take a closer look.

I am appalled at those in government are making these decisions about pain mgmt. I have pain and I would not continue to live without pain relief. Do you have ##s of the people in intractable pain who kill themselves because they cannot stand the pain>/ should we suffer because of misuse by some people? Blame the drug companies? Now thats logical (haha) blaming the bartender when someone drinks after leaving the bar and gets in an accident. When is this govt going to stop interfering with our lives?(literraly)

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About the author
Chan LoweCHAN LOWE has been the Sun Sentinel’s first and only editorial cartoonist for the past twenty-six years. Before that, he worked as cartoonist and writer for the Oklahoma City Times and the Shawnee (OK) News-Star.

Chan went to school in New York City, Los Angeles, and the U.K., and graduated from Williams College in 1975 with a degree in Art History. He also spent a year at Stanford University as a John S. Knight Journalism Fellow.

His work has won numerous awards, including the Green Eyeshade Award and the National Press Foundation Berryman Award. He has also been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. His cartoons have won multiple first-place awards in all of the Florida state journalism contests, and The Lowe-Down blog, which he began in 2008, has won writing awards from the Florida Press Club and the Society of Professional Journalists.
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