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July’s mindfulness meditation webinar began with a quote from a Buddhist monk: “When we get too caught up in the busyness of the world, we lose connection with one another–and ourselves.” Webinar host Gwenn Herman, LCSW, DCSW, Clinical Director of Pain Connection and a person who has lived with pain for 20+ years, believes strongly in the efficacy of mindfulness. In “From ow to om: Using mindfulness to reduce pain and stress,” she taught mindfulness meditation to webinar participants hoping to use it as a tool in their treatment plan.

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The U.S. Pain Foundation is excited to present the next event in its bimonthly webinar series, “From ow to om: Using mindfulness to reduce pain and stress,” featuring Gwenn Herman, LCSW, DCSW. Herman is the clinical director for U.S. Pain’s Pain Connection program, a network of support groups and other resources for people with pain.

During July’s webinar, to be held on the 17 from 1 to 2 pm EST, Herman will focus on using meditation and mindfulness to lower pain and stress levels. She will discuss the science behind mindfulness, different techniques, and lead attendees in a guided meditation. There is a great deal of scientific data to support the positive effects of mindfulness meditation for people suffering from chronic pain, and this free webinar is a rare opportunity to learn from someone who intimately understands these health issues.

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On June 16 and 17, U.S. Pain Foundation hosted an intensive training for nine future chronic pain support group leaders in Chicago, IL.

The training program was developed by Gwenn Herman, LCSW, DCSW, clinical director of Pain Connection, a program of U.S. Pain. By training more group leaders, U.S. Pain hopes to expand its network of support groups. Presently, U.S. Pain and Pain Connection offer support groups in eight states: Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Arizona, Washington, and California, in addition to three conference call support groups.

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Two U.S. Pain Foundation staff members–Cindy Steinberg, national director of Policy and Advocacy, and Gwenn Herman, LCSW, DCSW, clinical director of Pain Connection–have been nominated to serve on influential committees within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

Steinberg was announced May 1 as one of 28 members appointed to the newly established Pain Management Best Practices Inter-Agency Task Force. Steinberg is the only representative selected from a patient organization. The task force, created as part of the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act of 2016, aims to outline best practices and address gaps and inconsistencies in the management of acute and chronic pain.

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Photo of Gwenn Herman, courtesy of Bethesda Magazine.

In May 2016, Pain Connection — a well-known 501(c)(3) nonprofit that provides  support groups, support group trainings, and resources to help individuals with chronic illness and pain as well as their families — joined forces with U.S. Pain Foundation.

Pain Connection offers in-person support groups in four states: Arizona, California, Connecticut, and Maryland. But individuals with pain from anywhere in the country–or those who have difficulty traveling–can also get support via the “Pain Connection Live” conference call program, which offers two, hour-long support calls a month.

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