197 petitions

Update posted 7 hours ago

Petition to FDA , NIH , MHRA , World Health Organization, European Medicines Agency

Stop the Damage and Find a Cure for Victims of MRI Contrast Toxicity

Thirty million magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans are performed each year in the US alone, and many more worldwide. One of every three patients undergoing an MRI scan is injected with the contrast agent, gadolinium. This helps “light up” the results more clearly for the radiologists. Gadolinium is a highly-toxic rare metal. It has no place in the human body. When gadolinium was introduced as a contrast agent, it was prepared in such a way that it was thought to leave the body naturally within 3 days of the MRI scan. Scientific research carried out in the past decade has clearly disproved this. Gadolinium is retained in the body for many years, possibly a lifetime, and concentrates specifically in brain and bones. Tens of millions of patients are exposed to this known toxic substance every year, when they undergo an MRI scan. Many of these patients are young children, whose bodies are still developing. The long-term harm of gadolinium accumulation has not yet been quantified. However, there are already many victims of gadolinium poisoning who suffer painful and crippling symptoms. Recent studies show that gadolinium contrast is used far too liberally and is not necessary in many cases.   We must voice our concerns to the FDA, the World Health Organization and the medical community. We ask the FDA, the World Health Organization and health authorities worldwide to: Warn physicians and patients about the risks of gadolinium. Restrict gadolinium use only to cases where the benefits outweigh the risks. Invest in rapid development of safe gadolinium alternatives. Sponsor large studies of gadolinium toxicity in patients who have undergone MRI scans. Promote the development of effective treatments to remove toxic gadolinium from patients affected by it.

MedInsight Research Institute
7,413 supporters
Update posted 2 days ago

Petition to Connecticut State Senate, Connecticut State House

Prescription Privileges for Psychologists in Connecticut

Currently, access to mental health and addiction medication is severely limited in Connecticut. Due to a shortage of psychiatry providers, people experience long wait times, and often get medications from non-mental health professionals like primary care doctors or family nurse practitioners. Additionally, our state is suffering from an opioid epidemic but only 5% of physicians, including psychiatrists, prescribe the life-saving medication, Suboxone, for opioid addiction, which cuts the overdose death rate in half. Personally, I have worked with patients who have had to wait months to see a psychiatry provider who takes their insurance. Others drive across the border to New York State to find a psychiatrist. There are simply too few psychiatry providers in Connecticut and too many of our citizens are unnecessarily dying of opioid overdoses. Psychologists can help. Psychologists are doctoral-level trained mental health clinicians who provide psychotherapy to help people with mental health and addiction concerns (they also work as researchers, professors, and many other roles.) With the appropriate medical training, psychologists would be well suited to safely prescribe psychiatric medications to their patients who need them. On March 25, the Public Health Committee will be holding a hearing on Connecticut SB 966: The Prescriptive Authority of Psychologists. If approved, this would allow psychologists to prescribe drugs for mental health conditions, including addictions. The training outlined in this new bill is rigorous and safe: a Master’s degree in Clinical Psychopharmacology over and above the doctoral training they already have, supervised practice, and a national board exam. Since 1997, prescribing psychologists with this training have been practicing in the Department of Defense (all branches of the military), the U.S. Public Health Service, and the Indian Health Service.  Since 2002, New Mexico, Louisiana, Illinois, Iowa, and Idaho have already approved prescriptive authority for appropriately trained psychologists. While the majority of people with mental health concerns or addictions do not need medication, for those who do, allowing medically trained psychologists to prescribe medications in our state would greatly reduce barriers to care. Increasing access to mental health and addiction services will help people live healthier and happier lives. Appropriately trained psychologists with the ability to prescribe medication can help address the crisis of insufficient access to comprehensive mental health and addiction care, especially with regard to the opioid overdose epidemic. I urge your support of Connecticut SB 966 AAC: The Prescriptive Authority of Psychologists. Thank you.

Dariush Fathi PsyD
1,124 supporters
Update posted 4 days ago

Petition to Horizon Blue Cross and Blue Shield N.J.

Insurance refuses to pay for Life Saving Operation for Ovarian Cancer

  I am seeking any way I can to get the word out about insurance companies giving death sentences to women diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer. I have Horizon Blue Cross and Blue Shield N.J. health insurance. Three and a half years ago (October of 2014) I received a diagnosis of Stage 3 Ovarian Cancer. Ovarian cancer, according to the Cancer Treatment Centers of America, is usually diagnosed after menopause. However, some have been diagnosed as early as their 40’s or 50’s. This is not what you would label an “old person’s disease”. I began treatment with IV chemo, surgery (complete hysterectomy) followed by more IV chemo. By June of 2015 I was in remission.  I was in remission for two years. Two weeks before Christmas in 2017 I was told the cancer was growing. It had now spread to the liver, spleen and diaphragm. My doctors at Cancer Treatment Center of America, Chicago told me my best (and only option quite honestly) is a procedure called HIPEC Surgery. Without this procedure, the cancer will continue to spread. Our insurance pre-certification was submitted and surgery was scheduled for Tuesday, March 20, 2018. On Friday, March 16, after a day of pre-op testing, BCBSNJ notified the hospital the claim was being denied. This was an hour before everything shut down for the weekend. The reason? BCBSNJ is calling it experimental. This procedure was approved by the FDA in 1999. Two appeals have been filed and denied. As an alternative, my doctor wanted to perform surgery to remove the tumors (called debulking). Now we are being told this will not be approved because it was part of the original request for pre-certification. The part of this procedure they are labeling as experimental is a heated chemo placed in the abdominal cavity for two hours. How can they say no to a life-saving operation that has been performed for 20 years?! I have spoken to others who have had the same diagnosis, received the procedure and are living healthy lives today. So yes, there are insurance companies that do approve this. My husband and I are middle class people. He has worked for the same company for 38 years and always thought his insurance would be there when he needed it for either of us. We are currently trying to figure out a way to finance this procedure out of our pockets. BCBSNJ needs to update their coverage!  Please sign my petition and share it. Ovarian Cancer is a devastating disease, but there are procedures that can eradicate it. Insurance companies should be in business to help save lives – not condemn women to a death sentence because of outdated policies!  PLEASE SHARE ....... GET THE WORD OUT AGAINST THESE INSURANCE COMPANY'S.... Thank you!  My friend Joyce started a Fundraiser to help pay for the HIPEC part of the surgery that the insurance wont cover ($35,000). Here is the link. Any thing will help and thank you for sharing this and if you helped with the Fundraiser. Dec 28, 2018 —  4:40 p.m. Thursday I am amazed that this petiton has had over 20,000 people sign it. This issue is something that stirs many people for one reason or  another. But the situation remains the same.. My good friend Janine is still taking chemo, still fighting for her life and is paying for this surgery and many other medical cost out of her pocket.. I started a GoFundMe campaign for her and to this date there has only been $3, 763 raised.. While I am very grateful for those  who have given (and those who continue to pray for her), that amount falls far short of what is needed. If everyone signed this petition gave just  $5, it would cover more than what has already been spent and keep helping with the ongoing medical expenses.. Please visit the GoFundMe: Thanks, Joyce Couts      

Janine May
22,427 supporters
Update posted 6 days ago

Petition to Tim Walz, Rep. Melissa Hortman, Rep. Ryan Winkler, Rep. Jamie Becker-Finn, Hodan Hassan, Rep. Liz Olson, Rep. Mary Kunesh-Podein, Rep. Fue Lee, Rep. Jamie Long, Rep. Julie Sandstede, Rep. Kurt Daudt, Rep. Anne Neu, Rep. Tony Albright, Rep. Peggy Bennett, Rep. Josh Heintzeman, Rep. Jon Koznick, Rep. Peggy Scott, Rep. Jim Nash, Rep. Dan Fabian, Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flannagan, Senator Paul Gazelka, Senator Karin Housley, Senator Warren Limmer, Senator Michelle Benson, Senator Gary Dahms, Senator John Jasinski, Senator Eric Pratt, Senator Jeremy Miller, Senator Mary Kiffmeyer, Senator Thomas Bakk, Senator Susan Kent, Senator Kent Eken, Senator Ann Rest, Senator John Hoffman, Senator Carolyn Laine, Senator Jeff Hayden, Rep. Rena Moran, Rep. Tina Liebling, Rep. Laurie Halverson, Rep. Heather Edelson, Rep. Rod Hamilton, Rep. Ben Lien, Rep. Pat Garofalo, Rep. Raymond Dehn, Rep. John Huot, Rep. Hunter Cantrell, Senator Scott Jensen, Senator Michelle Benson, Senator Dan Hall, Senator Scott Dibble, Senator John Marty, Senator Eric Pratt

Expand MN's medical cannabis program, putting #PatientsFirst

Medical cannabis in Minnesota is inaccessible and unaffordable, and Minnesota's leadership, to date, is not addressing the root cause of these issues. Our current medical cannabis program is in dire need of change, and we need you to help us achieve measurable change. General Information – Patient Numbers As of Friday, March 8, 2019 there were 15,416 patients enrolled in the program. Over 7,000 patients have dropped their enrollment in the program since the registry began in 2015. According to the January 2019 Medical Cannabis Program Update, consistently in July 2018 through December 2018, fewer than 11,000 of Minnesota’s nearly 15,000 registered patients made a purchase from a state registered manufacturer. New York and Pennsylvania legalized medical cannabis shortly after Minnesota, and now each have around 100,000 patients; adjusted for population that is nearly 30,000 and 40,000 patients respectively. A model like Arizona would create access for over 150,000 patients. General Information – Cost of Medical Cannabis In a 2016 report by the Minnesota Department of Health Office of Medical Cannabis, 86% of survey respondents indicated cost was a barrier to access. Minnesota’s prices are substantially higher than other markets.  In Minnesota, a cartridge from Leafline Labs, costs $73, (18¢ per mg.). Minnesota Medical Solutions sells their cartridges, with only 250 milligrams of THC for $59, or (24¢ per mg.). The price of comparable products in Illinois, Arizona, Washington, and Oregon range from 6¢ to 9¢ per mg. 2019 Recommendations Sensible Change Minnesota makes the following urgent recommendations to the Minnesota Senate for improving access and affordability to medical cannabis in Minnesota: Remove statutory limitations for cancer and terminal illness patients; Add chronic pain as a qualifying condition; Add “any condition for which an opiate could otherwise be prescribed” as a qualifying condition; and Allow vaporization of raw cannabis as a delivery method. By removing statutory limitations on cancer and terminal illness, health care providers and patients can work together to determine whether medical cannabis is an appropriate treatment for their condition. Further, by adding chronic pain and “any condition for which an opiate could otherwise prescribe” will help reduce opiate use in Minnesota. Opiate overdose deaths and emergency room visits continue to rise in Minnesota amidst an opioid epidemic, with over 400 deaths in Minnesota, half from prescription abuse. A Department of Health survey of early intractable pain patients found that 64% of those who were on opioids when they entered the program were able to reduce their intake or wean off them after six months. Finally, research has shown that medical cannabis is associated with significant reductions in opioid prescribing in both the Medicaid and Medicare Part D populations. Minnesota is the only state in the country with an active medical cannabis program that statutorily prohibits the use of plant material, raw cannabis. As a result, Minnesota’s medical cannabis products cost 2-4 times equivalent products in other states. States that followed our model, like Pennsylvania and Florida, added raw cannabis material. Just this month, republicans in Florida voted to add smoking raw cannabis to their program, an initiative that passed the Florida House 101-11. Our colleagues in Pennsylvania indicate the cost to patients for medical cannabis dropped over 50% when raw cannabis was added as an allowable delivery method. Kyle Kingsley, M.D., CEO of Vireo Health, the parent company to Minnesota Medical Solutions, one of Minnesota’s two registered medical cannabis manufacturers, published an op-ed this past fall indicating that he saw only one realistic policy path toward making cannabis-based medicines more affordable, the use of regulated and safety-tested cannabis flower. State that Minnesota is now the only state among the 30 with viable medical cannabis laws that does not allow plant material of some type to be utilized directly by patients. Given the above considerations, the undersigned support the changes to the medical cannabis program recommended by Sensible Change Minnesota in this 2019 legislative year. Further, we believe that far more changes are needed, and request that Minnesota's lawmakers spend time over the summer of 2019 meeting with and talking to patients and begin to meaningfully address the barriers medical cannabis patients face.

Sensible Change Minnesota
774 supporters