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Hemmenway speaking during the award presentation

On June 13 at the Friar’s Club in New York City, U.S. Pain’s Nicole Hemmenway received Grunenthal’s annual Unsung Hero Award. The Unsung Hero Award is given to an individual who has excelled in the five following areas: relevance of the individual’s work in the pain community, effectiveness of their work, evidence of the individual’s creativity in their work, a broad outreach by the individual to all those in the pain community, and the devotion of the individual in building awareness and change for the pain community.

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On Mar. 17, Paul Gileno, president and founder of the U.S. Pain Foundation, and Cindy Steinberg, national director of policy and advocacy, were both honored with the Presidential Commendation Award from the American Academy of Pain Medicine (AAPM). Gileno was present to accept his award at the academy’s annual meeting in Orlando, FL.

“This year I was privileged to recognize the outstanding work of two extraordinary patient advocates – Cindy Steinberg and Paul Gileno of the U.S. Pain Foundation – for their tireless and effective patient advocacy from the local, grassroots level up through the national arena,” said AAPM Immediate Past President Daniel B. Carr, MD. “Their respective talents overlap but are not identical, and so I view their respective contributions in pain-related health policy and education as synergistic.”

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National Director of Policy and Advocacy Cindy Steinberg has had a busy month. On Jan. 3, she was featured in a Boston Globe article about the impact of clinicians prescribing fewer opioids. The article featured a study of 3,000 clinicians across the country. More than one-third said the reduction in prescribing has hurt patients with chronic pain. Just over half of all respondents said they had cut back on opioid prescribing within the past two years or so, while more than two-thirds of family medicine and internal medicine doctors had done so.

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For her tireless work to improve the lives of chronic pain patients, Suzanne Stewart, a pain ambassador and advocate for the state of Michigan, has been selected as the Joselynn Badmann Pain Ambassador of the Year. The award, now in its second year, honors an ambassador who has excelled in making a positive difference by supporting U.S. Pain’s mission and by advocating on behalf of the pain community as a whole. Although Stewart only recently became an ambassador and advocate in November 2015, already her impact has been felt throughout the organization.

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On Dec. 14, U.S. Pain President and Founder Paul Gileno was announced as a recipient of the American Academy of Pain Medicine’s (AAPM) 2017 Presidential Commendation. Gileno was selected by AAPM President Daniel Carr for his “leadership advocating on behalf of the many individuals who daily live with pain.” Gileno will receive the award March 17 during the group’s annual meeting in Florida.

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