Several of U.S. Pain’s in-person support groups, part of the Pain Connection program, are beginning to transition to Zoom. All U.S. Pain in-person meetings and events were put on hold due to COVID-19.
Pain Connection typically offers roughly 20 in-person support groups across the country. So far, six groups have made the transition to meeting virtually using the Zoom platform. While the groups are available remotely, to preserve the intimate feel, they are geared toward individuals in that state or geographic area.
The groups that have transitioned to Zoom so far are:
- Portland, OR – first Tuesday of the month at 12 pm (register here) or third Tuesday of the month at 6 pm (register here).
- North & South Carolina – third Tuesday of the month at 5 pm. Register here.
- Old Orchard Beach, ME – first Thursday of the month at 6 pm. Contact Ernie Merritt at email@example.com or visit www.painsupportgroup.org.
- Rockville, MD – second Monday of the month at 1 pm. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
- Tucson, AZ – first Wednesday of the month at 11 am. Contact Gwenn Herman at email@example.com or 1-800-910-0664.
- Boston, MA – second Friday of the month at 11 am. Contact Cindy Steinberg at firstname.lastname@example.org or 781-652-0146.
“While it’s hard to replace the power of connecting with other pain warriors in person, remote offerings via Zoom are wonderful because they allow more people with chronic pain to participate,” says Gwenn Herman, LCSW, DCSW, Pain Connection’s Clinical Director. “Our hope is that when COVID-19 ends, the relationships built via groups over Zoom might continue through our in-person meetings. That said, we know that it can be very difficult for people with chronic pain to leave the house or travel to a meeting that’s not close by, even without a pandemic happening. So we’ll be assessing how we can balance in-person offerings with virtual ones going forward.”
For individuals who have not used Zoom before, U.S. Pain has developed a step-by-step guide for joining, which you can download here.
In addition to the location-based support group meetings, Pain Connection continues to offer five monthly support conference calls, which are open to anyone. Those calls meet:
- Thursday, August 6, at 1:30 pm ET
- Thursday, August 13, at 7 pm ET
- Thursday, August 20, at 1:30 pm ET (new time)
- Thursday, August 27 at 2:30 ET
- Saturday, August 29 at 11 am ET