The Rights to Medicine

I contend that the status quo of overly restrictive regulations on access to medication impinges on the rights of patients and often their quality of health. The issue relates more broadly to the insane so-called "War on Drugs."

Susan Okie, MD has written a Perspective article in the 'New England Journal of Medicine' relating to a May ruling by the DC Circuit, US Court of Appeals. I agree strongly with the decision of one of the justices:
"The prerogative asserted by the FDA — to prevent a terminally ill patient from using potentially life-saving medication to which those in Phase II clinical trials have access...impinges upon an individual liberty deeply rooted in our Nation's history and tradition of self-preservation."
                                                            -Judge Judith Rogers

NEJM Interview on the subject.

In a related story, a study has been released showing the potent and imediate efficacy of the popular "street drug" ketamine as an anti-depressant. Currently, a severely depressed and potentially suicidal person who procures and uses ketamine could face years of imprisonment for using this "controlled substance."

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