In agonizing, crippling pain from lung cancer, his body language revealed the depth of his suffering. After the doctors provided him with pain medication, he surveyed himself with disbelief. He had neither hoped nor conceived of the possibility that this kind of relief was possible.
He returned the next month, but the clinic had exhausted its limited stock of pain medication. He then said, with outward calm, “I shall come again next Wednesday. I will bring a piece of rope with me. If the tablets are still not here, I will hang myself from that tree.”
Throughout most of the world, we find near total lack of access to pain relieving medications, and nearly 2.5 million children worldwide die in need of palliative care and pain relief.
This avoidable suffering is not limited to developing countries.
Throughout the United States, millions of people, whether they are dying of cancer or suffering from a serious injury or illness, are not able to get the pain medication they need to reduce their suffering.
The culprit? Well-intentioned drug control policies that focus more on preventing abuse than actually ensuring access to those who need it.
Now, there are good public health reasons to control drugs, whether we are dealing with prescription opioids, medical cannabis, or even antibiotics. So, the answer is not eliminating drug controls but rather making them more effective.
You see, governments rarely determine if the drug control policies they create actually work and are effective in ensuring access while also preventing abuse. But with your help, we can change that and improve the lives of millions of people.
The Center for Effective Regulatory Policy and Safe Access (CERPSA) is a nonprofit research organization that wants to eliminate the unnecessary pain and suffering caused by well-intentioned, but ineffective drug control policies. We take a science-based approach to research, public education and outreach. In some way we are like a government drug policy watchdog that focuses on drug control policies so that they can become more effective at ensuring access to those in need while also recognizing the need to prevent abuse and intrusion of the illegal market.
Colorado is already a world leader in drug policy innovation, we can also become a world leader in drug control regulation that would benefit the state, the nation, and the entire world.
The time is now for a new and compassionate way forward in drug control policy. With your support, we can make a real difference by helping communities create and maintain effective drug control policies that do not simply prevent abuse, but also do what they were designed to do: relieve human suffering.
Please join us and help improve the lives of millions by making a contribution today.
CERPSA. A Project of the Colorado Nonprofit Development Center