Created in 2017, A Call for a Change is an initiative to ensure patient access to comprehensive pain care, stop the abuse of opioids, and support patient education and activism. Comprised of the leading voices in the opioid crisis, including patients, healthcare practitioners, advocacy groups, law enforcement, industry, insurance companies and politicians, A Call for a Change advocates for policies to ensure the safest prescribing practices and that all patients living with addiction or chronic pain are receiving the best, comprehensive, multi-faceted treatment possible.
Expose the absurdities of policies that prevent patients from receiving the appropriate treatment options
Provide resources to patients so that they can become their own healthcare advocates
Ensure appropriate access to the appropriate use of opioids (including abuse deterrent products) as part of comprehensive pain treatment
Recognize chronic pain as a legitimate condition. Tell chronic pain patients’ stories and how the lack of availability of comprehensive treatment can lead to devastating, often life or death, consequences.
Combat misconceptions about opioid use and abuse
How did “A Call for a Change” come to be?
The opioid epidemic is not new. It has been brewing for a decade, but the media recently have elevated the crisis in the minds of people everywhere. News coverage is daily, in all corners of America. The rhetoric being shared by reporters and “experts” is largely the same and focuses nearly entirely on addiction and deaths from opioid overdoses, the majority of which are from illegal and often imported drugs. There has been lobbying for a reduction in prescribed opioid medications, which for some chronic pain patients, takes away a lifeline and the semblance of a normal existence. Nonprofit organizations, created to help the estimated 100 million pain patients find tips and tools to live with their pain, have seen a steep increase in calls to their suicide hotlines as access to opioids is decreased. The stigma of being a pain patient has surpassed the stigma of being an addict.
So, we’re entering the conversation. A Call for a Change consists of volunteer organizations, individuals, and companies who are passionate about ensuring people living with pain have access to comprehensive pain treatment. States have passed laws for parity in reimbursement of abuse deterrent products, yet many insurance companies severely restrict access to these medications. We’ve come together to lend our voices and our cumulative power to help find a solution to the opioid crisis, because through broader, coordinated efforts, a greater impact can be achieved.
And because in our view, poorly treated pain should be considered an epidemic.