While most in-person conferences and meetings have been canceled or postponed as a result of the pandemic, U.S. Pain Foundation staff were able to participate in three important virtual events recently.

IPRCC meeting

On June 16, Gwenn Herman, LCSW, DCSW, Clinical Director of Pain Connection, joined a videoconference meeting of the Interagency Pain Research Coordinating Committee (IPRCC), the highest-ranking permanent pain policy committee in the United States. The IPRCC heard from representatives across various federal agencies and programs.

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From left, Steinberg and Herman.

The Interagency Pain Research Coordinating Committee (IPRCC), the nation’s highest-level pain policy committee, convened on the campus of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) on Nov. 16 for its second meeting of 2018. U.S. Pain Foundation has two appointees on this prestigious committee: Cindy Steinberg, national director of policy and advocacy, and Gwenn Herman, clinical director of Pain Connection.

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According to new national data, an estimated 50 million or 20.4 percent of U.S. adults have chronic pain. Meanwhile, 19.6 million or 8 percent have high-impact chronic pain. The study was reported in the Sep. 14 issue of the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention publication.

“This recent epidemiological study is incredibly important, because it provides the most precise data we have to date on the prevalence of chronic pain and high-impact chronic pain in the U.S. adult population,” says Cindy Steinberg, U.S. Pain Foundation’s national director of policy and advocacy.

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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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The Interagency Pain Research Coordinating Committee (IPRCC), the nation’s highest pain policy advisory committee, held its biannual meeting Oct. 23 at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) campus in Bethesda, MD.  The IPRCC is the committee that oversaw the development of the National Pain Strategy, as well as the recently released Federal Pain Research Strategy. U.S. Pain Foundation’s National Director of Policy and Advocacy Cindy Steinberg, a member of the IPRCC, was in attendance.

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