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"I am asking for your help to solve an urgent health crisis facing America: the opioid epidemic," Murthy wrote. In his letter, which also appears on TurnTheTideRX.org, Murthy told physicians he understood their desire to keep their patients out of pain. "It is important to recognize that we arrived at this place on a path paved with good intentions," he wrote.
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They are among the most widely prescribed drugs in the United States, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says. Doctors prescribe them so much, federal officials published national guidelines in the spring of 2016 urging medical practitioners to be more judicious when recommending them to patients.