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Intractable Pain Act Repealed by TN Senate; Moves to House

If the Tennessee State Senate has its way, the 2001 Intractable Pain Act, also known as the “Pain Patient’s Bill of Rights,” will soon be repealed.

On Thursday, the Senate passed a bill to repeal the law, moving the decision to the TN House of Representatives.

The law made a similar movement last year, passing the House but not the Senate, indicating that it may actually pass this time. Barry Staubus, District Attorney General of Sullivan County, has been outspoken about the law, which he deems a legal shield that pill mills thinly-veiled as “pain management clinics” use in order to avoid legal action.

Many take issue with the law because though it allows physicians to refuse prescription of opiate medications to patients who simply request that therapeutic treatment, the doctor must legally provide the information of physicians that specialize in the treatment of severe chronic pain with opiates.

Supporter hope that repealing the law will help quell the growing prescription drug abuse the state has faced, particularly in eastern Tennessee.