Chronic pain patients in need of opioids take anger and frustration to Attorney General’s office

OKLAHOMA CITY - A battle between stopping addiction and help those with chronic pain.

It all came to a head inside a meeting at the Attorney General's office.

Tuesday was the first Opioid Overdose Fatality Review Board Meeting at the Attorney General's office, but chronic pain patients used it as a time to make sure their voices were heard.

"When you have to see them crawl over in bed and let out a big yell, and that's happened, I can't tell you how many times this week,” said an attendee.

Folks who already are in so much pain, are going the extra mile to get their prescribed opioids back.

Senate bill 1446 either took them away from patients or significantly reduced the amount they could be prescribed.

“Please give us our meds back,” said Thomas Stergas, an advocate. “We`re not asking for handfuls at a time. I could get by on 1 a day, most people can't but I can. Just let us have our quality of life. We didn't ask for this stuff.”

“You`re forgetting the people that are in chronic pain,” said an attendee. “I shouldn't have to say that I have cancer to receive my opioid.”

Those who rallied at “Don't Punish Pain" took that anger and frustration right to the Attorney General's office.

“I would really hope that you would take this committee and hear our voices because we aren't addicts,” said an attendee. “My husband is not an addict. He`s a man in pain and in tears.”

Many advocates also explained to Mike Hunter, some of their doctors are scared to prescribe them anything at all because of the new law.

“The thing that I hate worst about what you have told me is that these doctors think that this office is on some kind of witch hunt,” said Hunter.”

But, he says he can relate to those in pain. He's had multiple eye surgeries and his son almost died in a car accident. So, he promises to hear everyone out.

“So, I hear what you`re going through, but for me to deal with this in a way that`s constructive and decisive, we just need to identify stuff and just go from there,” said Hunter. “Is that ok?”

“Thank you for taking the time to hear from us,” said an attendee.

Hunter also says he wants physicians and patients to call his office and schedule a meeting to address everyone’s concerns that the new law is creating.

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