the advocacy monitor

Independent Living News & Policy from the National Council on Independent Living

Reminder and Extended Deadline: Sign Your Organization on to the CDC Updated Opioid Guideline Letter by April 8  

In 2016, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released its Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain. While the Guideline contains many noncontroversial provisions, aspects of it were widely misapplied in ways that created barriers to pain treatment and caused significant harm.

Recognizing these harms, the CDC, the FDA and others issued warnings against such misapplications, and the CDC ultimately announced its intent to update its Guideline, which it released in draft form on February 10. While the update contains significant improvements, it remains unclear how the new recommendations will remedy ongoing harms. (Read more in NCIL’s previous alert.)

To that end, the NCIL and the National Pain Advocacy Center (NPAC) have drafted a sign-on letter asking Congress to exercise oversight as the CDC finalizes its updated Guideline. Specifically, we are asking Congress to conduct hearings to document the harms that have resulted from the misapplication of the 2016 Guideline, as well as to address pain management more broadly – including how best to ensure that alternative treatments recommended by the updated draft are actually covered by payers so the Guideline does not exacerbate disparities in pain treatment. 

We hope you will add your organization’s name as a signatory to this letter! You can add your organization at the link above or by emailing [email protected]. The deadline to sign on is April 8, 2022.

Additional Information


  1. Mary rosa Kotuba says

    The opioid guidelines caused me to not be able to be employed full time & stop volunteering. It gave me high blood pressure, severe depression, extreme stress, hypothyroidism, & insomnia. I am unable to do most daily living skills, gave up reading, writing, exercising, socializing, & all meaningful life activities. My life at 58 years of age is finished & I pray to die. I have 5 incurable diseases, including spinal cord damage & a rare genetic upper motor neuron disorder.
    I served 20 years in the Marine Corps soI am not lazy as Anna Lembke proclaims us all to be.

  2. David Oldack says

    Astounding work! Very focused, well written.
    Can you present on Twitter, pain news network and likewise – with the request for typical pain patient to sign on as well?