Elderly Turn To Drug Dealing

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by zimv20, Dec 14, 2005.

  1. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #1
    link

    what healthcare problem?
     
  2. tristan macrumors 6502a

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    #2
    Rationing and limited supply creates a black market. My MBA economics professor would think this is so cool and would likely make us calculate the resale value created by the Bush perscription drug program.
     
  3. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #3
    We have pretty strict programs for people who get prescriptions for narcotics at the University of Florida hospital system...including seeing us oh-so-friendly psychologists. :)

    Anyway, the prescription drug program has its flaws, but if this is going on, the problem has more to do with control of availability of narcotics. People who are in a position to resell their narcotics should not be prescribed them to begin with... or should be very closely supervised and monitored.
     
  4. zimv20 thread starter macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #4
    point of clarification: are you using the term 'narcotics' in the strict sense of being a class of drugs, or as a generic term for drugs?
     
  5. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #5
    Well, perhaps it wasn't the greatest choice of words. Perhaps I should say controlled analgesics. :)

    I mean anything like oxycodone, methadone, etc, that is pain-killing and can be addictive.
     
  6. zimv20 thread starter macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #6
    i couldn't tell if you were referring to the elderly in the article or not. it seems you are, and therefore i take issue with this statement:
    the point of the article is not that the elderly are being prescribed unnecessary medication and, thus, have the luxury of profiting. the point is that the drugs are so expensive, this is a sort of last resort to making ends meet.

    incarcerating the "offender" or revoking their prescriptions is the worst sort of reactionary "solution."
     
  7. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #7
    Well...these particular drugs are very rarely considered medically necessary in the long term. Controlled analgesics are not like NSAIDs, where taking them protects the disorder from harming the body. The only thing they do for you is make you feel better.

    CA's are dangerous, dangerous stuff.... I personally would resist taking them unless I couldn't get out of bed without them. I don't know. I think you're making a very valid point. In that availability of adequate coverage for the elderly should be at the level of a right, and not just something nice.

    But I also think anyone who can or would sell their CA's needs to be cut off, and the system needs to be straightened out so that this cannot happen, because the usage of these medications should remain at an absolute minimum, for the safety of the people to whom they are prescribed, and they absolutely should not be taken by anyone in the absence of medical management.

    I'm sorry...that does sound cruel in hindsight... I have a high regard for older individuals. My research work is on trying to improve their quality of life. So please don't get me wrong.
     
  8. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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  9. MarkCollette macrumors 68000

    MarkCollette

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    #9
    Hmm, so we have old poor people, who need very strong pain medication. Maybe some have extra pills, and maybe some are just suffering through the pain, and selling the pills that they need. Regardless, they're selling their pills so that they can pay the bills and survive.

    Now, you guys, trying to solve this problem, are talking about how to better control the supply of the pills. The problem isn't in how available the pills are, it's how poor the people are. If they couldn't sell their pills then maybe they'd steal, or whore out their wrinkly asses, or who knows what.

    And the fact that it's becomming more and more common, points to a possibility that these are not just a few stupid or lazy people. Potentially this is systemic poverty.

    At 87 years old, that person was raised through the Great Depression, WW2, the Cold War, and Disco. They've probably had a tough life, and will now have a tough end in prison.

    Try and scrape together a little freaking empathy.
     
  10. Ugg macrumors 68000

    Ugg

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    #10
    Yeah, well anyone CAN sell medication as long as their is a buyer for it. The only way around it would be to have them locked up as they are in nursing homes and have an RN come around when the patient needs to take them. That ain't gonna happen.

    There's two problems here, pushy drug companies that want docs to prescribe as much as possible and do anything they can to make that happen. Then, the doctors are way overworked and afraid of being sued for not prescribing what their patients want.

    The other problem, obviously is a Social Security system that is failing the neediest and forcing them to sell the only assets they have. Necessity and mothers and all that.



    What's your solution? I mean a real solution not just some punitive stick.
     
  11. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #11
    My understanding of what we do here, as a whole, is an outpatient-based program that includes psychotherapy for teaching behavioral skills that help manage pain, continued monitoring of cognitive functioning and other areas in which side-effects are noted with prolonged usage of CA's, continued monitoring for addiction concerns and drug efficacy, and the creation of a plan for alternative pharmacotherapy using minimal / no CA's. All of that is on an outpatient basis, and is done in conjunction between psychology, anaesthesiology, psychiatry, orthopedic medicine (if it is a back injury) and/or whatever other specialty is responsible for the injury location involved. It isn't "nice," but it works pretty well. It seems like love to only feed a child candy all day, but you don't do it because you know about the health consequences. That's the same reason we do this too.

    This vision of me running around beating the elderly with a stick and eating babies is really fascinating, though. Let's talk about that instead.
     
  12. tristan macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    Yeah, maybe "geezers sell their meds" is a good headline but not much more. The statistics are all anecdotal so it's hard to see if its a real trend or just a reporter trying to convince his elderly neighbor to sell him a couple meds.
     
  13. MarkCollette macrumors 68000

    MarkCollette

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    #13
    Yes, that sounds good ... on paper. The problem here is that these people are all too poor to pay the bills, let alone for all that medical hand holding you just described.
     
  14. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #14
    In Florida, Medicare reimburses for this care.... Between Medicare and Medicaid, that's how they got the narcotics in the first place. But you're definitely right in the sense that it's much harder to implement this in a rural and not-easily-accessible place like that. :(
     
  15. eva01 macrumors 601

    eva01

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    #15
    ah methadone, that stuff is great, i have to eventually go up to boston and get my prescription -_-
     
  16. pseudobrit macrumors 68040

    pseudobrit

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    #16
    Is it too late to turn this into another death penalty thread?
     

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