Don’t Forget People Living in Pain: War on Opioids and Chronic Pain Patients during COVID-19

Featuring Andrea Trescot, MD, Kate Nicholson, JD, Richard Lawhern, PhD, & Jeffrey A. Singer

Governments are responding to the COVID-19 pandemic by temporarily suspending or relaxing regulations that block access to health care. State and federal officials should also suspend regulations that restrict access to opioids for as many as 50 million adults living with chronic pain.

Social‐​distancing measures exist to protect health by stopping the spread of COVID-19. But shelter‐​in‐​place orders, lockdowns of nonessential businesses, and prohibitions on elective medical procedures can threaten the health of patients suffering from chronic illnesses, immobilizing disorders, substance use disorders, and mental health problems. The combination of preexisting regulatory barriers and social distancing is causing increased suffering, isolation, and despair among these Americans.

Please join us for this event, where chronic pain patients, those who advocate for them, and those who treat them will discuss how current opioid policy is making the public health emergency doubly dangerous.