Majority of Americans Say Doctors Should Have Limits on Pain Medication Prescribing

A new poll finds 52 percent of Americans say doctors should have limits on the amount and dosage of pain medication they are allowed to prescribe. Almost half of those surveyed said prescription drug addiction is a major U.S. health problem.

The poll was commissioned by the advocacy group Research!America, which is using the results to encourage better research on chronic pain, The Hill reports.

“We need to better understand addiction,” Research!America President and CEO Mary Woolley said in a statement. “We shouldn’t shy away from research on new pain treatments based on fears of abuse. The suffering is simply too great. More robust investment in research and the engagement and support of policy makers and health care providers are essential to developing effective strategies to reduce the prevalence of addiction.”

The group found 18 percent of respondents believe chronic pain is a major health problem, but 63 percent know someone who has taken prescription medication for severe pain.