On Sept. 20, National Director of Policy and Advocacy Cindy Steinberg spoke on a panel at a public meeting about chronic pain and substance use disorder at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) in Washington, D.C.
The goal of the meeting was to discuss CMS’s plans to address the opioid crisis and pain management. That included reviewing current efforts underway by various federal agencies, along with exploring new approaches through presentations from leading experts. (In 2018, Congress directed CMS to review its coverage and payment policies to determine whether they have resulted in incentives or disincentives that have contributed to the opioid crisis.)
They range in ages, from 17 to 70. They live across the country–from New Jersey all the way to Puerto Rico. They have been diagnosed with dozens of different pain conditions, from sickle cell to fibromyalgia. They are all races, and all genders.
These are the faces of our Pain Awareness Month Storyathon. And they embody the fact that chronic pain doesn’t care what you look like, or where you come from. It can affect anyone, at any time, and in so many ways.
The final online event in our Pain Awareness Month series will explore the ways in which patient advocacy–at both the state and federal levels–centers on sharing your personal pain story. The event will take place Wednesday, Sept. 25, from 11:30 AM – 12:30 pm EST.
U.S. Pain Interim CEO Nicole Hemmenway will moderate a panel discussion with Cindy Steinberg, U.S. Pain National Director of Policy and Advocacy, Shaina Smith, U.S. Pain Director of State Advocacy and Alliance Development, and special guest Rhode Island State Rep. Patricia Serpa.
U.S. Pain Foundation’s 2019 Pain Awareness Month campaign is sponsored by Thrive Tape, the makers of a far-infrared kinesiology tape. Kinesiology tape is elasticized tape that can help improve mobility and support joints, muscles, and tendons.
Thrive Tape is unique in that it includes a blend of minerals and ceramic powder, which are silkscreened onto the tape and reflect far infrared. (Far infrared is a form of light that cannot be seen, but is experienced by the body as radiant heat.)
In honor of Pain Awareness Month, now through Friday, Sept. 20, at 11:59 PM PST, you can enter to win a Quell 2.0 pain relief device. Quell is wearable technology that uses prescription-strength nerve stimulation to help relieve chronic pain. It is up to ten times more powerful than a typical transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) device. It is worn on the lower leg, and controlled remotely by you through a smartphone app.
Buildings and landmarks across the country are lighting up in blue in honor of Pain Awareness Month as part of U.S. Pain’s “Shine Blue for Pain” initiative. Blue is the designated color for pain awareness.
“We are so grateful to all of the volunteers who helped reach out to these locations and request their participation,” says Nicole Hemmenway, Interim CEO of U.S. Pain Foundation. “Special thanks goes to our dedicated team member, Michele Rice, who coordinated everyone’s efforts and reached out to a number of landmarks.”
U.S. Pain Foundation has partnered with Health Union — which offers health-focused online communities and news content — to conduct a survey, “Chronic Pain In America 2019.” The goal? To get a better understanding of how people with chronic health conditions experience pain, how they navigate the health care system, and what there experiences are managing and treating chronic pain.
On Tuesday, Sept. 17, U.S. Pain is hosting a candid conversation with Victoria Suan, director of the award-winning documentary film, Becoming Incurable.
Released earlier this year, Becoming Incurable explores the transformation of three individuals who became diagnosed with painful, chronic, incurable illnesses. Suan was inspired to create the movie after seeing the struggles faced by her cousin, Leo, who lives with severe dystonia.