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Auntiem949

Discriminated against ?

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A lil back story first ..I'll keep short as possible. I've been on pain meds for 13 years ..10 of those years with same dr.i always pass drug tests ..never abused always respected my meds ..I have bulging disk and pinch never ..pain in shoulder both knees and sciatica. I chose to leave my dr due to him wanted me on morphine which I did not want .anyways I go to new dr I walk in door nurse comes in no hello just says I want you to know we do not write for pain meds or head meds ..dr comes in agrees and says I must get bloodwork xrays and see what can be done ..she sends me to orthopedic dr who sends me to physical therphy. I call dr office and say I'm in pain need my pain pills she says we do not write for pain pills I said sign on desk says you do if I'm willing to sign a pain contract .she says that's only for patients who have been with us a while not new patients. I think that's discrimination..is it ? If yes what can I do ..its been 2 months still in pain ..

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Actionable discriminaion has to be based on a protected class or status, such as race, religion, sex, national origin, etc.  A health care provider is allowed to decline specific treatment to a class of patients, such as new patients.  Indeed, that is the new norm.  You may be aware that NSAIDS, like ibuprofen, have been demonstrated to provide equal or greater pain relief compared to opioids.

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1 hour ago, Auntiem949 said:

 I think that's discrimination..is it ? If yes what can I do ..its been 2 months still in pain ..

 

It's discrimination (pretty much any choice made favoring one person or thing over another is discrimination) but most discrimination is legal. For example, it is legal for an employer to discriminate in favor of more highly educated applicants when hiring or promoting people. Under federal law, it is illegal for a place of public accommodation (which covers pretty much any place open to the public, and would include a doctor's practice or hospital) to discriminate against customers on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, or disability. A number of states add additional protected classes, like sex and sexual orientation. But it is not illegal discrimination under federal law or the law of any state for a doctor to refuse to give narcotic pain medication to new patients but given to established patients. Indeed, with the current concern over opiate addiction the current mood is very much against prescribing these drugs unless really necessary; a big change from just 10-15 years ago. Most doctors now will not prescribe them for new patients, especially for long term use, because they are concerned that the patient may be addicted and is shopping around to get the drugs the patient wants for the addiction. They are more willing to prescribe pain meds (though less than before) for patients they have known for awhile and thus know aren't addicted to anything.

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On 6/24/2019 at 9:19 AM, pg1067 said:

No doctor has any legal obligation to write a prescription for a patient.

 

In the context of this thread, that's true. But I'll mention the one exception that comes to mind. The law in at least some states is that when a doctor terminates his/her relationship with an existing patient the doctor must provide prescriptions of any current long term medications the doctor has prescribed to last the patient some specified period of time (usually 30 days) so that the patient will have the meds he/she needs while searching for a new doctor.

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