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Florida has seen a growing problem of patients dying from prescription pain drug misuse. The legislature’s solution of harsh mandatory minimum sentences – sometimes up to 20 years – for “drug offences” may be making matters worse. Patients in need of pain medication and the doctors trying to help them are now often trapped in this criminalization of medicine. As a consequence doctors are increasingly fearful to help these patients who then turn to illegal and unsupervised means to aleve their pain. Greg Newburn, Florida Director of Families Against Mandatory Minimums
, discusses with Michael Ostrolenk what his organization is doing to help restore sanity and give judges back their discretion in these cases.