FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (5/9/04)
Contact: Rev. Ronald V. Myers, Sr., M.D., Chairman
National Juneteenth Holiday Campaign
National Juneteeenth Observance Foundation (NJOF)
National Juneteenth Christian Leadership Council (NJCLC)
American Pain Institute (API)
web sites: www.Juneteenth.us
5th Annual Juneteenth Frederick Douglass Freedom March
Scheduled for the "19th of June", in Washington, DC
Juneteenth Frederick Douglass Freedom March Brings Attention
to Poor Pain Management in African-Americans
(Washington, DC) - The 5th Annual Juneteeenth Frederick Douglass Freedom March, scheduled to take place on Saturday, the "19th of June", 2004, at the nation's capitol, will begin at the historic Washington, DC home of abolitionist Frederick Douglass, at 9:30am. "The march will focus attention on poor pain management in African-Americans," states Rev. Ronald V. Myers, Sr., M.D., Chairman of the National Juneteenth Observance Foundation (NJOF) and President of the American Pain Institute (API). "Frederick Douglass fought to bring an end to slavery in America. Following his great example of leadership and courage, the annual Juneteenth Frederick Douglass Freedom March brings attention to important issues facing the black community."
The National Medical Association (NMA), at the 2002 NMA Annual Convention and Scientific Assembly, cited "poor pain management" as a "major health problem" for African-Americans. According to an article published in the 9/22/02 issue of Jet Magazine:
"Racial profiling by doctors and pharmacies, as well as the lack of Black Physicians, contribute to inadequate pain management, a serious national public health problem that affects millions of Blacks and other underserved minority populations, according to an ongoing study by the National Medical Association.
Based on the NMA's preliminary study findings: Racial profiling is more prevalent in pharmacies located in urban areas where pharmacies either refuse to carry certain opiate medications for fear or robbery, or a belief that prescriptions will be diverted for illegal use.
The NMA, which represents the collective voice of 25,000 Black physicians, continues to evaluate disparities in pain treatment based on race."
Rev., Dr. Myers, who recently lead "America's In Pain!" - MARCH ON WASHINGTON - "Silent No More", in April, calling for Congressional Hearings on the DEA War on Physicians, Pharmacists and Pain Patients, is gathering thousands of signatures on petitions demanding congressional hearings.
"Over 50 million people are living in untreated, disabling pain," states Dr. Frank McCune, M.D., M.B.A., Chairman of the National Juneteenth Medical Commission and featured speaker at the MARCH ON WASHINGTON. "African-Americans continue to experience greater difficulty in obtaining adequate pain management in America."
"I urge the Congressional Black Cuacus (CBC) to take action and support the call for congressional hearings on the DEA," states Rev., Dr. Myers, also a Baptist Medical Missionary serving the poor in the Mississippi Delta. "The DEA has unjustly prosecuted many physicians who treat chronic pain, shutting down their medical practices and in some cases, trying to give them long prison terms. The irresponsible actions of the DEA "witch hunt" of many good physicians who treat chronic pain has led to a health care catastrophe in America."
"Far too many people have chosen suicide over living with untreated chronic pain," states Rev., Dr. Myers. "The increased suicides among chronic pain patients demonstrates the morally reprehensible actions of the DEA. African-Americans pain patients are finding it very difficult to find physicians to treat them, especially when many black physicians have been targeted for prosecution by the DEA."
Dr. Michael Jackson, an African-American pain management specialist, faces a 24 year prison term for treating pain patients in South Carolina. "The only thing I am guilty of is compassionately treating people in chronic pain according to the guidelines of the South Carolina Medical Board."
"Congress must take action to end the DEA war on physicians and pain patients," states Rev., Dr. Myers. "We must have congressional hearing on the suicides and prosecution of good physicians will continue."
For information on the 5th Annual Juneteenth Fredrick Douglass Freedom March and how you can sign the petition calling for congressional hearings on the DEA, call Dr. Myers at 662-247-1471 or 202-331-8864, web sites: www.AmericanPainInstitute.org or www.PainCoalition.us , e-mail: MyersFound@aol.com.
For information on the WASHINGTON JUNETEENTH 2004 National Holiday Observance and the National Juneteenth Holiday Campaign call Dr. Myers at 202-331-8864 or 662-247-1471, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org , web sites: www.Juneteenth.us, www.19thofJune.com and www.njclc.com.