LETTER: Expensive investigations are not lowering suicides


Eleven deaths at an area Veterans Affairs hospital, and an investigation is requested.

Twenty veteran suicides daily since December 2016, when the Obama administration implemented a rigid opioid-treatment limit on Veterans Affairs from the 2016 “CDC Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain,” which was for primary-care physicians only, was applied to all Veterans Affairs facilities.

Probably the same number of suicides of the nation’s most disabled, intractable pain patients began after the Trump administration approved this lethal guideline on April 2, 2018, for Medicare and Medicaid, which was immediately adopted improperly in 2018 as law for all physicians by 36 states, including West Virginia.

Immediately after the March 2016 issuance of this vile CDC guideline, it was condemned by hundreds of physicians, and an unbiased investigation by the Department of Health and Human Services began.

This investigation’s conclusion was published Dec. 28, 2018, as a replacement opioid-prescribing guideline to stop suicides of defenseless, disabled pain sufferers. The same states that adopted the CDC guideline without reading it, filed suit to stop its replacement at the beginning of 2019, and it has sat ever since.

Why bother with expensive investigations if their conclusions are ignored and suicides flourish?

Douglas Hughes


Funerals for Sunday, February 16, 2020

Atkins, Linda - 3 p.m., Fidler & Frame Funeral Home, Belle.

Call, James - 2 p.m., Chapman Funeral Home, Hurricane.

Hankins, Sara - 1 p.m., McGhee-Handley Funeral Home, West Hamlin.

Hensley, Joshua - 2 p.m., Evans Funeral Home & Cremation Services, Chapmanville.

Jackson, Jeffrey - 6 p.m., Lantz Funeral Home, Buckeye.

Jobe, Joe - 2:30 p.m., Sunset Memorial Park Mausoleum Chapel, South Charleston.

Johnson, Freda - 2 p.m., Kanawha Valley Memorial Gardens, Glasgow.

Ratcliff, James - 3 p.m., Curry Funeral Home, Alum Creek.