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A high-ranking federal task force has released its much-anticipated draft report with recommendations for improving the management of chronic and acute pain. The public is being asked to provide feedback on the report by April 1.

On Jan. 16, Cindy Steinberg, National Director of Policy and Advocacy for U.S. Pain Foundation and the only patient and patient advocacy representative on the task force, presented a webinar on the report, why it matters and how to weigh in.

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It can seem, sometimes, like the federal government is weighing in on pain care without understanding what patients go through. Fortunately, a new task force charged with creating recommendations for pain management has worked hard to include the patient perspective.

This task force, called the Pain Management Best Practices Intra-Agency Task Force, recently released a much-anticipated draft report with recommendations for managing acute and chronic pain. After a 90-day public comment period ending April 1, the report will be finalized and submitted to Congress.

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Update: As of January 4, 2019, U.S. Pain’s charitable solicitation registration was renewed by the Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection.

The U.S. Pain Foundation has filed and publicly shared its 2016 and 2017 Form 990 Information Returns. The 990 Returns show misappropriation of U.S. Pain’s funds by the founder and former CEO, totaling almost $1.9 million over the course of three years, from 2015 to 2017.

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Here’s to 2019

A message from interim CEO Nicole Hemmenway.

Dear pain warriors,

As many of you know, 2018 was a challenging year for U.S. Pain Foundation. In spite of the obstacles, it was still a year full of progress and growth for the organization. I wanted to take a moment to look back over the last 12 months with you.

One of the things people with pain desperately need is to understand they are not alone and that there is always hope. With that in mind, we held two support group leader training weekends in Chicago and Phoenix this spring, and grew our support group network offerings nationally throughout the year.

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Today, the Pain Management Best Practices Inter-Agency Task Force released its much-anticipated draft report with recommendations for improving the lives of millions of individuals with acute and chronic pain. The task force, which was was convened last year, is overseen by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and comprised of 29 members, including Cindy Steinberg, National Director of Policy and Advocacy for U.S. Pain Foundation.

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On Friday, December 7, the U.S. Pain Foundation shared a statement regarding the misuse of funds by the former CEO. We are limited in what additional information we can disclose at this time due to the ongoing investigation and the pending 2016 and 2017 Form 990 Information Returns, which we anticipate will be filed by the end of the year. We continue to cooperate with the authorities and are seeking restitution.

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We want to share an update regarding a situation discovered earlier in 2018. As a result of an internal audit, we were dismayed to discover financial irregularities involving the former CEO of U.S. Pain Foundation. The Board of Directors immediately hired an independent attorney and a forensic accountant to investigate. The findings were clear that this individual had misused funds from the U.S. Pain Foundation. The Board concluded that the former CEO repeatedly misled and concealed information from the Board of Directors and staff. The Board demanded and received the former CEO’s immediate resignation.

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Kids with pain have unique obstacles, and they deserve unique support. With this in mind, the 2018 theme for U.S. Pain’s annual KNOWvember campaign was pediatric pain. The month included daily facts on social media and four special webinar events.

Recordings of each event are now available via the links below. You can watch them at any time.

Cannabis and Children: Navigating Parents Through Stigma
Ellen Lenox Smith

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A recording is now available of U.S. Pain Foundation’s Nov. 26 panel discussion, “Chronic pain and the risk of suicide: A staggering crisis and what to do about it.”

The event was prompted by a study published this September in the Annals of Internal Medicine, which found that more than 10 percent of suicide cases in the United States involve chronic pain. Panelists discussed reasons behind this statistic, offer tips for coping with the mental health challenges pain creates, and gave suggestions for how clinicians and caregivers can help.

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