Floridians Prepare To Take Back The State
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla., Sept. 1 /PRNewswire/ — September’s National Pain Awareness Month has never been more important for the state of Florida. Recent data from the Florida Medical Examiner shows residents are dying at a rate of at least 7 per day as a result of prescription drug abuse. In an effort to combat this sobering statistic and bring the prescription addiction epidemic to the forefront, the Florida Society of Interventional Pain Physicians (FSIPP), with endorsements from the Florida Medical Association (FMA), and the Florida Society of Addiction Medicine (FSAM), is launching a statewide community campaign called The Pain Truth, today, September 1. The program is also supported by the Florida Office of Drug Control’s 2009 Drug Control Strategy regarding prescription drug abuse and diversion.
The Pain Truth is designed as an initial 3-month public education program, which will include a series of public service announcements, education, awareness, Internet, and community events across the state. This full-on offensive will canvas the state and reach people at home, workplaces, schools, churches and more, leading up to a December 1 event when The SUNSHINE STATE Goes Dark for a Day. The event is meant to recognize lives lost, by offering an official day of mourning for families and friends of thousands who have died.
“Prescription drug addiction has reached epidemic proportions nationwide and all signs point to Florida as the epicenter of this problem. If we band together as a community we will have greater power to educate, to influence, and to abate the issue,” said FSIPP board member, Sanford Silverman, MD.
Recent statistics demonstrate the importance of growing awareness of prescription drug abuse throughout the state:
- Prescription drug abuse is now the Number ONE killer of middle-aged Floridians.
- Nearly 3,000 Floridians died from prescription drug use in 2009.
- Prescription Oxycodone was responsible for more deaths in Florida in 2009 than cocaine, heroin and morphine combined. The increase is up 25.9% over 2008.
Throughout the campaign organizers hope to engage individuals, cities/communities, corporations, government officials, physicians/medical personnel, media and more, from throughout the state to join them. The Pain Truth will also help educate medical practitioners and the public regarding the Department of Health’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program and how it will help reduce prescription drug abuse and diversion and improve patient standard of care.
Also at issue is the fact that the public, including those within the medical community, is ill informed and often doesn’t understand that there is a difference between legitimate pain management physicians and those that work at pill mills. For the millions of Floridians who suffer pain, The Pain Truth will address this matter and will create a separate, free, searchable website to help them find a legitimate pain physician.
“This epidemic has been extremely difficult for Floridians who suffer from genuine pain. The news is full of negative stories about pain doctors and their so-called “pill mills”, and it’s left patients apprehensive. They are unsure of where to go to get help for their very real pain. But, there are hundreds of board-certified pain management physicians who can truly help heal those in pain. The Pain Truth program will help patients identify trusted physicians with true credentials,” said Deborah Tracy, MD, president of FSIPP.
Those interested in learning more about The Pain Truth can visit www.thepaintruth.com, or call 407-833-9202.
Media Interview Opportunities: Throughout the campaign we can arrange for interviews with physicians who are board certified in pain management. We can also work with you to find patients or family members affected by prescription drug addiction.
About the Florida Society of Interventional Pain Physicians (FSIPP)
FSIPP is a not-for-profit organization whose members promote the development and practice of safe, high quality, cost-effective interventional pain management techniques for the diagnosis and treatment of pain and related disorders. Members are advocates for the health of their patients and uphold the high principles, policies, and practices of their medical specialty. They also pursue to educate all stakeholders about pain, pain management techniques, pain medications, and the credentials a legitimate pain physician holds. FSIPP was an integral part in getting the Prescription Drug Monitoring Legislation passed in the state.
SOURCE Florida Society of Interventional Pain Physicians