We had a very good conversation about chronic pain, the opioid controversy, federal and state governments, how to effectively advocate and the National Pain Report on Thursday.
We participated in a webinar sponsored by the U.S. Pain Foundation in association with September as Pain Awareness Month. Our host was Emily Lemiska who is Communications Director for the foundation.
If you missed the webinar and would like to listen and/or watch, you can do so here.
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Many of the questions seem to center around advocacy—from something as simple as joining a social media group on Facebook, following advocates and others on Twitter, to writing local media or local and state elected officials.
It was interesting, and a point that we made more than once is it’s not hard to lend your voice to efforts to improve chronic pain treatment.
In addition, we spent quite a bit of time talking about the opioid controversy, how it has harmed the patient and how the battle for good patient care is intensifying.
We spent some time analyzing why the news media’s coverage opioid coverage has seemed to have ignored the collateral damage that is being inflicted on chronic pain patient and noted a shining exception in Elizabeth Llorente of Fox News.
We named a number of people who are fighting on behalf of chronic pain patients including Terri Lewis, Ph.D., Dr. David Nagel, Richard “Red” Lawhern, Ph.D., Mary Cremer in Missouri, Cynthia Toussaint in California and the Don’t Punish Pain Rallies to name a few, in addition of course to the U.S. Pain Foundation efforts.
We pointed out that Cindy Steinberg of U.S. Pain was the only chronic pain patient on the HHS Pain Management Task Force. We also bemoaned the lack of progress being made on distributing the HHS report since Dr. Vanila Singh, who was (and is) a voice for compassionate chronic pain care left HHS.
The point is that chronic pain patients have a lot of people fighting for them—but the community always needs more.
Let us know your thoughts.