Pubdate: Wed, 01 Aug 2007
Source: Press-Enterprise (Riverside, CA)
Copyright: 2007 The Press-Enterprise Company
Author: Kathy Schmitt


I applaud Dan Bernstein ("DEAsy pickings," July 29) for telling it
like it is. As a breast cancer patient, I feel qualified to comment.
The usual potent anti-nausea drugs didn't work for me. I had to take
an unusually powerful drug, which would have cost more than $360 per
chemotherapy treatment, had I not had a PPO insurance that covered

Many fellow cancer survivor friends say their insurance companies
refused to cover any but the cheaper and less-effective anti-nausea
medications. One of my friends related that the only thing that took
away her nausea was marijuana. Anyone who has spent several days in
bed so nauseated that he or she couldn't stand the sight, smell or
mention of food without retching knows how important it is to find
something affordable that works. Fortunately, my friend had access to
marijuana, a cheap alternative to the legal pills I had to take.

The DEA, in targeting sick people, actually helps the illegal drug
dealer by forcing patients to seek an illegal street source or suffer.
It makes me wonder if the DEA is in cahoots with the pharmaceutical
companies in eliminating any cheap competition.


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