Legislative attempt to usurp medical authority - Pennsylvania:
In a series of half dozen proposed bills, the PA. Senate is seeking to assume the role of physicians. For example: Sen. Bill 1293 would estaboish a "methadone death and incident review team" - what a label for those who desperately need help to contemplate! The team (mainly non-physicians would be charged with "determining the role that methadone played in each death ..." Isn't that the traditional responsibility of the trained/certified medical examiner? Sen. Bill 1294 would establish "eligibility criteria" (ever hear of eligibility" for a medical treatment ordered by medical doctors?), to include: "inability [of applicant] to stay drug free after at least two substantial attempts at appropriate treatment in drug-free programs." Like telling severely depressed and suicidal patients they must first have two unsuccessful suicide attempts before being "eligible" for anti-depressant medication. And the same bill demands a specific plan to achieve abstinence," imposes urine testing every two weeks forever, and prohibits patients from driving during the first two weeks treatment with methadone (but only if the methadone is given for treatment of dependence - patients getting methadone for pain would be under no constraint whatever).
Do these proposed bills reflect appalling ignorance, or merely self-serving demagoguery intended to gain votes in the next election? And which of these explanations would be more shameful for these elected officials?