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We need Trump's touted deal-making skills and Trudeau's compassionate stance toward drug users to promote a global solution that confronts the opioid pandemic as if it were the plague. We educate the public. We get rid of the conduits. We care for the sick.
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Across Canada, the tragic spike in opioid-related deaths has brought to national attention the large and complex issue of drug use and misuse. As fentanyl-related overdoses are gripping the country, there is a connected, but separate crisis of doctor-prescribed opioids being increasingly used on a regular, long-term basis.
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Critics have begun pointing the finger at the medical system and its prescribers -- well-meaning doctors and specialists who've been giving too many patients excessively powerful opioid medications to deal with modest pain. But we can dig deeper and look at the relationship between medical education and pharmaceutical company influence as a significant contributing factor.
Today, doctors' offices are inundated with people who have been harmed more than helped by these drugs. Thousands more are dead. And yet the marketing continues, with pain specialists and advocacy groups opposing moves to curtail opioid prescription, their efforts financed by the very companies that make these drugs.
We support generic pharmaceutical products in this country, but in the case of oxycodone generic, and now a generic treatment for opioid addiction by a company who is one of the biggest producers and marketers of prescription pain killers in the country, we can't help but think that patients and physicians are getting played by their governments, and at a huge human cost.