As a board-certified pain medicine doctor, Dr. Willem Nel makes critical decisions almost every day about how to help people suffering with severe pain. It’s a complex job that can make the difference between someone feeling a whole lot better or spiraling into addiction.
But lately, images of out-of-control Florida pain clinics with lines of addicts — many of them from out of state — has left a stain on this pain business.
Nel, 44, feels the backlash and it makes him angry. Often he’s trying to help someone like Spearance, who is suffering but doesn’t want to be on drugs.
“We’ll find other ways,” he told her.