Governor Rick Snyder issued a proclamation recognizing September as Pain Awareness Month to make citizens aware of the many pain management resources available and bring attention to the financial and personal costs related to chronic pain that impacts an estimated four million Michiganders – costs such as increased health care expenses, lost productivity and lost wages.
“Michigan is a nationally recognized leader in providing pain management information,” said Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) Deputy Director Shelly Edgerton. “Our goal is to provide comprehensive educational resources for health care professionals and the public to help improve pain and symptom management, improving our citizens’ overall quality of life.”
LARA’s Bureau of Health Care Services’ (BHCS) pain management website at www.michigan.gov/pm is an excellent starting point for finding information on pain. Consumers will find information on treatment options, end of life care, palliative care, state and national guidelines and recommendations, legislation, resources, data, and links to organizations with expertise in the area of pain and symptom management.
Michigan’s Public Health Code states that Michigan patients and residents in state-licensed facilities are entitled to adequate and appropriate pain management as a basic and essential element of their medical treatment. Many types of treatment, both non-pharmacological and pharmacological, are available to manage or greatly ease most pain.
Although much media attention is paid to the increase in prescription pain medication misuse, abuse, and diversion, a great deal of human pain and suffering still remains inadequately treated. For this reason, LARA notably encourages health care professionals to learn more about treatments for pain, which may include both pharmacological and non-pharmacological approaches.
Further, LARA supports and encourages the implementation of the Michigan Advisory Committee on Pain and Symptom Management’s (ACPSM) Model Pain Curriculum, which covers a variety of treatment methods and is posted on LARA’s pain management website. The curriculum was developed by a multidisciplinary committee of health professionals for health professional students. For those health professionals who have graduated, the ACPSM developed a Pain Toolkit for Health Care Professionals, which is also available on the website.
“Dealing with chronic pain is a complex health issue so the information we provide on pain management is continually being updated,” said BHCS Director Carole Engle. “Each year, new studies reveal new information that tells us that a multidisciplinary approach is often recommended for effective pain management. We provide the resources for the health care provider and the patient to work together to properly and safely assess, treat and monitor that individual’s pain.”
Health care professionals who are interested in learning more about how to appropriately, safely and effectively use prescription pain medications are encouraged to schedule and/or attend S.C.O.P.E. (Safe, Competent Opioid Prescribing Education) training. Information on S.C.O.P.E. is available on the pain management website.
LARA’s Pain Management and Palliative Care Program also supports the use of the Michigan’s Automated Prescription System (MAPS) at www.michigan.gov/mimapsinfo, which is the prescription monitoring program for the State of Michigan. MAPS has proven to be effective for ensuring the safety of patients using prescription pain medication.
During September — Pain Awareness Month, follow LARA on Facebook and Twitter for tips on the many strategies that can be applied to manage pain.
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