This year, U.S. Pain’s KNOWvember campaign will highlight complementary medicine options, ranging from massage to acupressure to medical cannabis. Each day, U.S. Pain will be posting a fact about complementary medicine to provide people with chronic diseases options to research when piecing together a pain management plan.

So far, two webinars are scheduled:

  • “Acupressure for Stress Relief: The Seva Stress Release Program,” with Regina Rosenthal, PT, an advanced practitioner and instructor of process acupuncture, on Nov. 20 at 7 pm EST. Register here.
  • “Don’t Let Pain Limit You: Take Charge with Sound Data and Social Support” with Rachel Trobman, CEO and founder of the pain management app, Ouchie, on Nov. 9 at 12 pm EST. Register here.

More details and registration links for these events will be posted on U.S. Pain’s social media accounts.

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Policymakers, health care providers, and members of the public continue to grapple with how to address the ongoing opioid crisis. Most recently, President Trump deemed the opioid epidemic a national health emergency, calling on the country to work together to solve it.

But many people with pain feel the discussion about reducing opioid abuse is often one-sided, overlooking that these medicationss can be a critical part of treatment that allows them to function.

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Cleverly specializes in medical communications.

U.S Pain’s next webinar for volunteers and members interested in volunteering will be held Nov. 21 at 1 pm, EST. The webinar will feature an informational presentation, “How to talk about pain so your doctor will listen,” given by Diane Cleverly, PhD. Cleverly has 20 years of medical communications experience and is the founder of Concierge Conversations, a coaching service that helps teach patients and providers how to better communicate with one another.

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Social media influencer, activist and editor Devri Valazquez, was one of many who participated.

More than 500 people participated in the #MakeItVisible campaign during the month of October, reaching an estimated 400,000 members of the public. The campaign asked people to share a video or photo that made their invisible condition visible, using the hashtag, #MakeItVisible. For every photo or video shared, Healthline donated $5 to U.S. Pain in support of its mission, for a total of nearly $2,500.

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City & State: Petaluma, California

Age: 36 years old

Pain Warrior Role: Volunteer since 2016, ambassador since 2017

Condition: Reflex sympathetic dystrophy

Favorite tip for others with chronic pain: “Stay connected! Living with chronic pain has a profound impact on one’s life and can be completely isolating. It’s imperative to cultivate relationships with others who can relate to the unique experience of living with pain. Connecting online with the chronic pain community, attending face-to face support groups, and volunteer or advocacy work are great ways to link up with others who understand what you’re going through — first hand. Guidance from the chronic pain community can also help provide the support needed to not only live, but also thrive while living with pain. You’re not alone!”

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Nominations are being accepted now through Nov. 15 for the 2017 Joselynn Badman Ambassador of the Year Award. Do you know someone who has gone above and beyond in spreading pain awareness this year? Help U.S. Pain recognize pain warriors who actively spread awareness while inspiring others to educate and empower the pain community.

Nominees must be a pain ambassador, advocate, or volunteer with U.S. Pain. In addition, nominations must be made by someone other than the nominee; self nominations will not be accepted.

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Dennis distributing U.S. Pain materials.

Earlier this fall, longtime New Jersey ambassador Jeannette Rotondi and her husband, Dennis, coordinated with Rutgers University’s Behavior Health Center to share U.S. Pain Foundation materials and information during the center’s Wellness Month, which coincided with Pain Awareness Month. Dennis is a staff clinician at the center and has volunteered alongside Jeannette since she joined U.S. Pain.

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U.S. Pain is part of a coalition of 41 patient and provider groups supporting the “Bait-and-Switch Bill,” SB 360/HB 229, which would require health plans to deliver on the prescription coverage benefits they market and sell for the year. Right now, at any time during the health plan year, insurers are free to increase out-of-pocket costs, enact restrictions on coverage (e.g. additional prior authorizations), or remove coverage of a prescription medication altogether – practices commonly referred to as “nonmedical switching.” These unfair changes can have negative health consequences, especially for patients with serious, chronic conditions.

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After a two-year process calling on New York State lawmakers to update patient protections surrounding biologic treatments, U.S. Pain Foundation is pleased to announce that Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a biologic substitution bill, Chapter 357 of the Laws of 2017.

Earlier in the state’s legislative session, U.S. Pain reached out to senators and the Assembly, urging them to support Senate Bill 4788 and its companion bill. The legislation secured effective medication substitution laws while also allowing patients to access this new age of medicines in a safe, reliable, and consistent manner.

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While it may seem harmless, drinking alcohol with certain prescription medications can cause potentially dangerous adverse effects. To help educate the public on the dangers of mixing prescriptions and alcohol, the National Council on Patient Information and Education (NCPIE) created a campaign, “Don’t Mix,” as part of Talk About Your Medicines Month this October. U.S. Pain Foundation’s Founder and President Paul Gileno, who sits on the Board of Directors of the NCPIE, says he is strongly supportive of the effort.

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