It’s Time To Tell Them What We Think!

CDC chronic pain opiate comments June 2020

The CDC needs your comments NOW!!!

Request for comment.


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announces the opening of a docket to obtain comment concerning perspectives on and experiences with pain and pain management, including but not limited to the benefits and harms of opioid use, from patients with acute or chronic pain, patients' family members and/or caregivers, and health care providers who care for patients with pain or conditions that can complicate pain management (e.g., opioid use disorder or overdose)—hereafter called “stakeholders.” CDC will use these comments to inform its understanding of stakeholders' values and preferences related to pain and pain management options.


Written comments must be received on or before June 16, 2020.


Submit written comments, identified by Docket No. CDC-2020-0029 by any of the following methods:

Federal eRulemaking Portal: 

Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

Mail: Shannon Lee,

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 

1600 Clifton Road NE, Mailstop S106-9

Atlanta, Georgia 30329.


All submissions received must include the agency name and Docket Number. All relevant comments received will be posted without change to:


(including any personal information provided)

For access to the docket to read background documents or comments received, go to:


For Further Information Contact

Shannon Lee, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 

1600 Clifton Road NE, 

Mailstop S106-9, 

Atlanta, Georgia 30329, 404-498-3290, 


Supplementary Information

Public Participation

Interested persons or organizations are invited to participate by submitting written views, recommendations, and data related to perspectives on and experiences with pain and pain management. CDC invites comments specifically on topics focused on using or prescribing opioid pain medications, non-opioid medications, or non-pharmacological treatments (e.g., exercise therapy or cognitive behavioral therapy). These topics are as follows:

Experiences managing pain, which might include the benefits, risks, and/or harms of the pain management options listed above.

Experiences choosing among the pain management options listed above, including considering factors such as each option's accessibility, cost, benefits, and/or risks.

Experiences getting information needed to make pain management decisions.

Please note that comments received, including attachments and other supporting materials, are part of the public record and are subject to public disclosure.

Comments will be posted on 


Therefore, do not include any information in your comment or supporting materials that you consider confidential, proprietary, or inappropriate for public disclosure. If you include your name, contact information, or other information that identifies you in the body of your comments, that information will be on public display. CDC will review all submissions and may choose to redact, or withhold, submissions containing private or proprietary information such as Social Security numbers, medical information, inappropriate language, or duplicate/near duplicate examples of a mass-mail campaign. CDC will carefully consider all comments submitted.


Public comment will help CDC's understanding of stakeholders' values and preferences regarding pain management and will complement CDC's ongoing work assessing the need for updating or expanding the CDC Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain, published in 2016 (available in the Supporting Materials tab of the docket and at:


Please note that HHS/CDC is also planning opportunities for stakeholder engagements and conversations on these topics. These have been postponed because of COVID-19 but will be announced in a future Federal Register Notice when they are rescheduled.

More information about CDC's assessment of the need for updating or expanding the Guideline and the establishment of a federal advisory committee workgroup to provide expert input and observations to CDC on the possible Guideline update or expansion is available at 🔗  

If the Guideline is updated or expanded, CDC would request public comment on the draft document through a notice in the Federal Register prior to final publication.

Anyone who would like to receive information related to CDC's ongoing work specific to drug overdose prevention (including the ongoing response to the opioid overdose epidemic) as well as other updates (e.g., pertaining to resources and tools) may sign up at:

and select topics of interest. Available offerings include:

Subscription Topics: Injury, Violence & Safety

Subtopic: Drug Overdose News

Dated: April 14, 2020.

Sandra Cashman,

Executive Secretary, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

[FR Doc. 2020-08127 Filed 4-16-20; 8:45 am]


Countdown Is On!

386 comments as of April 25th, 2020

Comment to the CDC Today!

Idea for comments ...

I am chronic pain sufferer with a whole host of medical issues at the ripe ‘ole age of 45. I suffer with Degenerative Disc Disease, Fibromyalgia, Migraines, & now anxiety too boot. I had been treated with the pain medication regime Fentanyl, successfully mind you, from 2010 until the CDC mandate wreaked havoc into my life, offering me a less than lackluster quality of life. 

After a horror of a spinal surgery due to lack of quality pain control all brought on due to this mandate, I knew this mandate played a pivotal role in my PTSD and my hospital stay. It caused undue stress, inability to function for nearly a year, and it affected every facet of my life.  Having my proper pain medication yanked away was nothing more than a cruel, torturous joke.

Having suffered with these chronic painful ailments since I was 34 years old has been tough, but I was able to have some quality of life with my steady dose of my Fentanyl patch. I never abused my medication. I always abided by my physician/patient contract, and I always passed all urinalysis all of the time.

Having had four other spinal fusion surgeries prior to the CDC mandate and the clampdown on opiate medications was very evident. My first four surgeries, while painful, I was able to recuperate from rather easily. My fifth (and hopefully last), took me a year. I am still unhealthy from it, and now suffer with PTSD too boot!  The physical, emotional, and mental pain and suffering I worry may never go away, or at the very least, allow me to ever seek treatment from another hospital or urgent care center ever again.

I implore that your organization revise your mandate (once again), and this time, be sure to include the FDA, and the DEA in it. If those other two organizations are not willing to adhere to, and accept and acknowledge your statements and mandate as credible and binding, the DEA especially will continue to go after the physicians serving in the pain management community especially and given this widespread treatment and their response, us millions of chronic pain sufferers will continue to be left hanging left out to dry once again.

Are these comments set up to really help the chronic pain community, or are these comments set up to serve your organization as the guise that you are simply trying to save face by looking as though you are trying to address and help what is “collateral damage” (aka us, the chronic pain community) when you really are not? I would love to really know. Everything was so swift, seemed so underhanded, the revised mandate came so far after the damage was already done. The folks you claimed to help by hauling any tapering were already either yanked off completely or had already been in dire suffering because the taping had already taken place. What is the real deal?

And, worth mentioning here too, how can you put a blanked MME number on patients for ANY medical treatment or protocol? If I were diabetic, would you be sending out a mandate on the max limit of insulin an one patient can administer to themselves at any given time? ... I think not! Ya in the chronic pain community have been punished for what others have done. Not to mention that since your mandate, the overall overdose and death rate from opiates is STILL on the rise! The reason is simple; because the opiate epidemic never was! We didn’t have any opiate epidemic in our country, instead we have an illicit Fentanyl epidemic. And now, as a result of your actions, we have a PAIN EPIDEMIC! Thanks! 

Please take my comments seriously. I am a chronic pain sufferer looking to live some semblance of a quality of life — whatever that may be. Like maybe do my dishes, pay bills, be able to concentrate, leave the house, exercise, maybe even volunteer or entertain every once in a while. I am just human. Is that too much to ask?

Kind Regards,

A chronic pain patient in St Louis Missouri who was yanked of 3/4th of my opiate pain medication,

Sheri Owen