As part of its “Action Collaborative on Countering the U.S. Opioid Epidemic,” the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) recently hosted a listening session to better understand the experiences of people living with chronic, non-cancer pain, including their experiences interacting with and navigating the health system. NAM also is seeking patients to share their experiences online via this survey.

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Volunteers are the heart and soul of the U.S. Pain Foundation. No matter what your interests are, or what your physical limitations may be, there is an opportunity for you to make a difference. The majority of our volunteer activities can be done from the comfort of home!

Below is a list of examples of ways to get involved, and information on how to get started. If you’d like to get more information on opportunities to act straight to your inbox, sign up as a volunteer here.

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For immediate release

Contact: Emily Lemiska


Middletown, Conn. (Feb. 4, 2020)—Ernie Merritt, a resident of Saco and lifelong Mainer, is the 2019 Joselynn Badman Ambassador of the Year for the U.S. Pain Foundation, the leading nonprofit organization for people with chronic pain. The annual award is named for the late Joselynn Badman, an inspirational volunteer who lost her battle with pain in 2015.

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Independence redefined

By Elisa Friedlander, LMFT

Recently, during a dinner outing with my wife and another couple, I mentioned my plan to try driving again (it’s been several years since disabling neck pain and other medical problems made driving a thing of the past). One friend responded, “Great! You can finally be independent!” There was no ill-intention in her comment. Still, it felt like an eyelash jabbing my cornea. At the time, I just nodded. My “response” came later that evening when I was alone in my head:

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Stayin’ alive

By Mia Maysack

There’s no limit to the unconditional amount of reasons a person could be in pain: genetics, an accident, injury, or surgery gone array.

Swimming/diving were my passions.

It has been said, fear wasn’t an emotion I demonstrated often – at the age of 3, I would attempt jumping into the deep end on my own accord.

At 10 years old, you could find me spending my waking moments at the neighborhood pool from open – to close. Until bacterial meningitis robbed me of childhood, little could anyone have known that I’d live with head pain forevermore.

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Each November, U.S. Pain Foundation organizes a month-long educational campaign for the pain community. Recognizing that art and writing can help kids and adults cope with and/or express chronic pain and its effects on their lives, this year’s KNOWvember campaign will focus on creativity.

During the month, titled “Art through Pain: How Creativity Helps Us Cope,” U.S. Pain will be:

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Thanks to its dedicated volunteers, U.S. Pain Foundation’s 2019 Pain Awareness Month campaign, #LetsTalkAboutPain, was the most robust yet. All of the month’s activities—from educational events to the daily social media challenge—were possible through the generosity of Thrive Tape, makers of a far-infrared kinesiology tape.

“We chose the theme because we believe that speaking up about personal experiences is the first step to creating awareness and change,” says Interim CEO Nicole Hemmenway. “We are incredibly grateful to our supportive, passionate community for bringing pain to the forefront throughout September, and to Thrive Tape for providing the funding to support these efforts.”

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In honor of Pain Awareness Month, U.S. Pain is collaborating with Enso to raffle off one Enso Model 1 device, valued at $250. The device delivers electric pulses similar to implanted stimulators to relieve pain. The giveaway is free to enter and will close Thursday, Sept. 26, at 11:59 PM PST.

About Enso

Enso Model 1 is a wearable device that delivers a patented high-frequency electrical stimulation. Enso Model 1 is small and unobtrusive and delivers a more comfortable treatment vs other stimulators. It is also controlled using your smartphone.

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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.

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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.

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