when we pit pain against drug misuse, nobody wins

…when you try to balance the damage caused by pain against the damage caused by drug abuse, nobody wins.

Barry Meier on Fresh Air

Vox looks at the pain patients vs. opioid misuse conundrum:

Drug policy is hard. There’s no perfect solution to the conflict between treating pain and curtailing the abuse of opioid painkillers. Really smart people have been arguing where the balance lies, as the debate in Stanford shows.

“There’s always choices,” Keith Humphreys, a drug policy expert at Stanford University, previously told me. “There is no framework available in which there’s not harm somehow. We’ve got freedom, pleasure, health, crime, and public safety. You can push on one and two of those — maybe even three with different drugs — but you can’t get rid of all of them. You have to pay the piper somewhere.”

 

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