Poor People Die in Agony Because of War on Drugs

The New York Times has a story today on how a woman with breast cancer is dying in agony without any pain relief because of the War on Drugs, which has made painkillers such as morphine unavailable in her country, Sierra Leone.

People in terrible pain from cancer and burns are being denied painkillers throughout the world because of restrictions on medical use of opioids such as morphine, even though such drugs can be produced so cheaply that even the poorest people in the Third World could purchase them if restrictions were lifted.

In the United States, fear of harassment by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) results in many doctors prescribing inadequate amounts of painkillers to terminally ill patients, resulting in them dying in agony. (Since I write about drug-related issues periodically, I would like to note that unlike many sanctimonious drug warriors, I have never used, or experimented with, any illegal drug.)