Is mandatory random drug
testing at a doctor's office constitutional?
Before I had brain surgery (coiling on the basilar artery), I was an independent truck driver contracted to a very large trucking concern. In the capacity of an over-the-road driver, I understand the need of employers and the US DOT to hold all of us in the trucking industry to a higher standard--whether we are under a load or just driving a car recreationally. I had no problem with the random testing, along with the yearly physical, which also included drug testing. My years on the highways clearly "rattled my cage" at the horrific auto accidents, some of which were caused by people either under the influence of prescribed or illegal substances. On the other hand, just as many accidents were caused by simple neglect, or, most recently, texting or talking on cell phones or other communicative devices.
Tomorrow I must return a questionaire to my doctor's office, be evaluated for a second time by a "pain management specialist"--which in my opinion is a very loose description for a ARNP who only sees chronic pain patients in the particular clinic where I am seen monthly. I am on disability, permanently, and am well-educated, and do extensive research on my own, extensive exercises to try and find new ways to make my brain and my body at least as good as it was before my brain surgery.
Before I had to leave my home because of an abusive spouse, I was doing very well--my pain was under control most of the time, and my medications did not interact in any way that impaired my physical ability. Now, with two of my medications taken from me--for the simple reason that the meds I was taking made me "look like a drug addict". I assure you, I do not present clinically as a drug abuser, and now I do have a difficult time managing my pain and functioning to the best of my ability every day. For the present, and until my divorce is filed and finalized this year, I am out of my area for most treatments, which significantly raises the amount of my co-pays, particularly for specialists. I do not like having to take narcotic pain medicine, but I am allergic to NSAIDS, and I simply cannot afford to see a chiropractor and a physical therapist three days per week. I think that this pain contract at the very least violates my fourth amendment rights and perhaps others, but in order to get my medicine, I am forced to sign this document. Do I have any choice in this matter?
It concerns me that the government is interfering in the medical profession--particularly with people like me who are on medicare and are receiving state funding to help me pay for my insurance and high co-pays with my medication. With the federal government telling doctors how to practice medicine is like having a plumber functioning as our president. To me, it's ludicrous and demeaning. The facility also wants me to agree to pay for these random tests as well, which will add a hardship to me financially, since I am on a low fixed income. I cannot even afford to get half of the medical treatment I truly need, and my medicare and social security pay little to nothing for most of the alternative treatments at these chronic pain facilities. Sorry that this question is so long. Thanks for your opinion.