There is Power in Numbers
Historically, pain has been studied in relationship to specific diseases (e.g., osteoarthritis, cancer, HIV, etc.), bodily regions (e.g., head pain, back pain, shoulder pain), or in relationship to medical procedures (e.g., dental procedures, surgery, etc.). Considering pain in this way resulted in there never being enough people in any one grouping to have a meaningful voice for influencing health policy for pain, to push for more pain research, or to even support each other in living with pain. That all changed in 2011 when the Institute of Medicine published its report on pain that combined all forms of chronic pain to reveal that in the U.S. over 100 million people suffer from chronic pain of various forms. 1 Counted in this way, there are more people suffering with chronic pain than have diabetes, heart disease, stroke, or cancer–combined. Now we know that there are more than enough people to make a meaningful difference in pain. They just need to be organized.
The Community Pain Center is building the infrastructure to support the interests of a large community of individuals with chronic pain. This community will be able to support each other, have a voice in directing pain policy, make recommendations for pain research, and gain access to resources to personalize one’s approach to managing pain.
1Institute of Medicine (IOM). Relieving Pain in America: A Blueprint for Transforming Prevention, Care Education, and Research. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press; 2011.