By Ed Coghlan.
The Pain Management Best Practices Inter-Agency Task Force is a new, high-level federal think-tank consisting of 28 appointees, including Cindy Steinberg, National Director of Policy and Advocacy for U.S. Pain Foundation.
We ran this story on May 23—and asked you to get your comments in because the deadline was on May 25th, which wasn’t a lot of time. Now it’s going to be June 15th.
The National Institute of Health has decided, at the suggestion of Ms. Steinberg, to extend the deadline for public comment.
For Steinberg, who is the only chronic pain patient advocate on the task force, this is an opportunity for more chronic pain patients to be heard.
“Please encourage people with pain to write in,” she said. “This Task Force is charged with determining best practices in pain management for the nation and ensuring consistency across agencies so CDC Guidelines, FDA Opioid Policy, CMS coverage, VA/DoD Pain Management Guidelines are all fair game to comment on. It is an important opportunity to be heard!”
Overseen by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the task force has been charged with the following:
- Propose updates to pain management best practices
- Issue recommendations that address gaps or inconsistencies for managing chronic and acute pain
- Provide the public with an opportunity to comment on any proposed updates and recommendations
- Develop a strategy for disseminating such proposed updates and recommendations to relevant Federal agencies and general public
- Provide expert advice and recommendations for pain management and prescribing pain medication
Let us give you a tip. In our comments section, some of you expressed frustration and concern whether your comments were being acknowledged. We received a number of comments from folks who wonder if they are being heard.
The NIH comment software will look like it runs off the page. As you write your comment, it goes in a straight line. If you start to think, “wait where did my words go?”, don’t worry. It is accepting your statement.
Now please do (as many of you already have) – it’s important for the voices of provider, patient and loved one are heard.
You might ask, how do I comment? (Click here) and go to the blue bar that says “comment now”.
Let us know in our comments section what you told the NIH.