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Table 2 Myths and barriers to prescribing morphine

From: An evaluation of a morphine public health programme for cancer and AIDS pain relief in Sub-Saharan Africa

Professional fears about safety of morphine and addiction Logistic supply chain and transport inadequacies
Public fears that morphine expedites death Lack of pharmacists and pharmacy support
Perceived difficulties in predicting national requirements Lack of trained palliative care staff
Fears about illegal diversion Over regulation, legal barriers and complex regulations
Fear of inaccurate diagnosis Difficulties finding patients in need of care and following them up
Perception that all therapeutic morphine prescribed needs to be accounted for Lack of hospital/palliative care vehicles
Low priority given by medical staff to the dying Palliative care nurse training lengthy
  Cost of complimentary drugs e.g. laxatives or Step 1 and 2 analgesics
Perceptions that laws governing therapeutic morphine are difficult to change Morphine storage difficulties
  Health staff overwhelmed
  Low priority by hospitals to palliative care