As an organization, we believe:
1. Chronic pain is a disease in and of itself, with biopsychosocial implications.
2. Chronic pain has enormous consequences for individuals, families, and society at large
3. Chronic pain is widely misunderstood, overlooked, and underfunded relative to its impact.
4. Each person with chronic pain is unique and will need an individualized, comprehensive treatment plan.
5. Patients should have easy and affordable access to a full array of safe, effective treatment options across multiple disciplines.
These principles guide all of our advocacy efforts.
2021 key priorities
Each year, we evaluate trends in pain care and the policy landscape to identify the specific areas where we hope to make an impact. In 2021, our key priorities are:
1. Promoting movement toward integrated, multidisciplinary pain care as best practice.
2. Working to improve access to a range of therapies for chronic pain, especially integrative and complementary modalities, such as acupuncture, massage therapy, physical therapy, chiropractic care, behavioral health strategies; innovative medical devices; and novel therapeutics.
3. Advocate for dissemination of the Pain Management Best Practices report to front-line clinicians and implementation of specific recommendations, including a national pain awareness campaign.
4. Advocate for epidemiology collection, analysis, and reporting on chronic pain as a primary vehicle to raise public awareness about chronic pain, as well as identify more effective treatments and better understand chronic pain’s onset and progression.
5. Encouraging the continuation of telehealth coverage of provider visits at parity with in-person appointments beyond the public health emergency, including prescription renewal appointments, chronic care management, and behavioral health.
Topics of interest in 2021
While we plan to target the above priorities, we’ll also be paying attention to the following topics and taking action when appropriate:
COVID-19 impacts on people with pain and their providers
Increased pain education for providers
Medical cannabis access
Novel therapeutics for chronic pain
Balanced approaches to opioid prescribing and dispensing
Issues impacting headache disease
Access to medical foods as a treatment approach to pain
Coverage of biologics and biosimilars
Pharmacy benefit and utilization management, including step therapy, prior authorization, non-medical switching, co-pay accumulators, and access to medical devices
Medicare Part B and D access and cost
Overall drug pricing