November 18, 2015
The West Coast Pain Summit was held on November 14, 2015 at the Elk Grove Public Library Conference Room. In attendance was Lynn Green – Pain Therapist, Medtronic INC (Medtronic.com), Jacie Tourart – PA-C, Spine & Nerve Diagnostic Center (spinenerve.com), MarLeice Hyde – Erasing Pain (erasingpain.com) and Michael Connors, LVN. Harmony Home Care (harmonycareathome.com). We had local and out-of-town attendee’s join us. Our Power of Pain Foundation Delegates Erik and Kharisma VanFleet assisted as needed and 9-year-old ‘Tai Howard offered a friendly smile and a well-behaved demeanor.
Mr. Clete Dodson won our Power of Pain Long Sleeve Shirt chosen from the in person drawing. Monique Maxwell was chosen for our #NERVEmber silent drawing.
My presentation included, but was not limited to:
Welcome to the First Annual West Coast Pain Forum hosted by the Power of Pain Foundation.
This year hosted and sponsored by both the Power of Pain Foundation and Medtronic Neuromodulation.
Our topics today include Access to Care, Advocacy and Neuromodulation with Medtronic Pain Therapies from Medtronic.com and TameThePain.com
Access to Care
There are 8 key areas to the Patients’ Bill of Rights
- You have the right to accurate and easily understood information about your health plan, healthcare professionals, and health care facilities.
- You have the right to your choice of providers and plans.
- You have the right to emergency services. (Emergency department, urgent care)
- You have the right to take part in treatment decisions.
- You have the right to respect and non-discrimination
- You have the right to confidentiality. (Privacy of healthcare information)
- You have the right to file complaints and appeals.
- You have the right to your consumer responsibilities. (Take an active role in your own health and well-being. Doctors are only a tool, too. )
Understand your symptoms
Communicate with caregivers and healthcare professionals
Communication is essential.
Become an expert in your pain
Be prepared when attending your doctor’s visit.
Keep a pain journal.
Write down your questions.
Do you have concerns about your medication, or treatments?
Have a shared understanding of your pain and symptoms.
Get emotions under control.
Be assertive, but listen to others.
Describe your pain. (Don’t just say its pain. Does it burn, stab, pinch, tingle. Does it feel like cutting, aches, or throbbing? Is it localized or all over? Is it instigated by stress, depression, emotions?) Your doctor can’t help you if you’re not able to communicate.
Take someone with you to your appointments.
Take responsibility in reaching goals.
Caregivers: Be mindful and assertive in caregiving. According to the Department of Pain Medicine and Palliative Care at Beth Israel Hospital in New York, a family caregiver is “anyone who provides any type of physical and or emotional care for an ill or disabled loved one at home”. For this definition, “family” refers to a nonprofessional who is called “family” by the person who is sick. Sometimes, family is whoever shows up to help. (IN the FACE of PAIN, 5th edition, page 40)
Be easy on your caregiver without them you might not have any one to care for you. If you’re both a patient and a caregiver, be easy on each other. No one knows better than both of you.
Keep one network of physicians. One primary care provider, let referrals be given by only him or her.
Use only one pharmacy. Have medications sent to the same location. Pick them up from that location.
Don’t allow more than one physician to prescribe you an opioid pain medication.
The PDMP/ Prescription Drug Monitoring Program contains records of your prescribing history and is maintained and reviewed for changes in your habits.
When visiting ED’s describe your pain on the 0 – 10 NRS or Numeric Rating Scale which is most commonly recognized in emergency care. The NRS Scale for pain measures the intensity of your pain. It’s the 11 point numeric scale with 0 representing “no pain” and 10 representing “the worse pain imaginable”, “as bad as you can imagine” or unimaginable and unspeakable pain”.
Don’t tell the doctor your pain is an 11 or 20. You may be found unbelievable and your access to timely and proper care may be delayed, or in some instances even denied. You want them ready and willing to assist and care for you without second guessing.
Medications don’t work if we don’t take them. They’re prescribed to be taken as directed. Not doing so can lead to flare ups, increased pain, adverse reactions, withdrawal and misuse.
Examples of non-adherence
Not filling prescriptions
Not picking up filled prescriptions from the pharmacy
Stopping medication before instructions say you should
Taking more than instructed or at the wrong time of day
*(IN the FACE of PAIN, 5th edition, page 16)
Many patients, including myself, have a severe Vitamin D deficiency in addition to the dystrophy caused by their diseases, or syndromes. Dystrophy is defined as – a disorder in which an organ or tissue of the body wastes away. This includes the bone and tissue in the mouth, jaw, teeth, and gums. Access to care can be a setback when our teeth decay, break away, or we’ve lost them as a result. Lacking dental insurance is an issue of its own. Judgement regarding addiction, misuse and drug seeking can hinder care until each time we prove otherwise. Additionally, BiPAP and CPAP use can contribute to dry mouth and decay. Moisture removed from the mouth is another price we pay just to breathe.
The California Legislature approved a bill (Assembly Bill 374) the second week of September. Step Therapy required that a patient try and fail (fail first) a medication before being allowed to take the one their physician would have otherwise prescribed for them. AB 374 now allows providers in California to fill out a form to bypass step therapy requirements.
The PA Shuffle: Prior Authorization; information on our efforts can be found at our table, next to our ADF Policy efforts.
An energy assistance program is available through SMUD for qualifying patients who use specific medical devices. You can request the Medical Assistance Program Application by calling the Residential Inquiries number located on your bill.
Each of the above can assist in access and care. ( 7 min ) ^
Pain Clinic (15 mins)
Break, meet and greet, #painPOP info
We’d love to have you take part in our #painPOP in the parking lot after the conference for photos and a bit of fun in raising awareness for National Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy/Complex Regional Pain Syndrome Month. Our #painPOP campaign is participate or donate. Accept a challenge or donate to our cause.. I challenge all of you to raise awareness for the painful, debilitating and often progressive Neuro autoimmune illness that desperately needs a cure, an understanding for better quality of care, early diagnosis for stabilization or remission, and continued education and support materials, programs, free public educational events and conferences that we provide free to patients, caregivers, the healthcare community and the general public. We can’t do it without the help of awareness and funding. If you didn’t receive your raffle ticket joining us today, ask for one. Check NERVEmber.org tomorrow to see if you’ve got the winning numbers. You’ll be contacted to be sent your prize. Medtronic is up next with a demo, overview and a Q & A session. Enjoy each other!
The Power of Pain Foundation Co-Sponsored SB 623 ( Abuse-deterrent Opioid Analgesics ) with Assemblyman Jim Wood and attended the live press conference held at the California State Capital on March 24, 2015. We will continue to support this bill in 2016. The bill will provide a safer alternative option to opioid medications by deterring several non-swallowing ways opioids can be abused.
You can join our international Delegates team by visiting: powerofpain.org/delegates-of-popf
We’re always looking for committed local volunteer advocates to support our legislative and policy efforts. The Power of Pain Foundation is a member of:
The Consumer Pain Advocacy Task Force (CPATF) which is comprised of national leaders and decision-makers from 16 consumer-nonprofit organizations that are dedicated to patient well-being and supporting the use of effective methods for pain treatment. The State Pain Policy Advocacy Network (SPPAN) first convened these leaders in March 2014 to organize a collective action effort to benefit people with pain. consumerpainadvocacy.org
SPPAN is an association of leaders, representing a variety of health care and consumer organizations and individuals, who work together in a cooperative and coordinated fashion to effect positive pain policy on the state level—policy that guarantees access to comprehensive and effective pain care for all people living with pain. Power of Pain Foundation is one of the original SPPAN partners. sppan.aapainmanage.org/
As POP Advocacy Director (POP 2011-12) and a SPPAN leader since 2013, locals would be working with me, as needed, to attend and represent us at the Capital.
We thank you all for attending today. We look forward to seeing you again next year. Please visit powerofpain.org for our education, awareness, advocacy and access to care missions.
After the conference we popped the pain out of ’em! #painPOP
#painPOP with attendees from WCPS
Published on Nov 14, 2015
#painPOP with some of the attendees from the POP’s West Coast Pain Summit 2015 for neuropathy awareness in #NERVEmber #ihavethenervetobeheard #doyouhavethenervetobeheard #powerofpain
http://PowerofPain.org/conditions #ShareAndMakeAware #ParticipateAndOrDonate
Additional photos can be found on the Power of Pain Foundation’s Facebook Page at facebook.com/powerofpain in the 2015 POP Events Album.
Lynn Green – Pain Therapist, Medtronic INC (Medtronic.com), Twinkle VanFleet – Advocacy Director (powerofpain.org) and Jacie Tourart – PA-C, Spine & Nerve Diagnostic Center (spinenerve.com).
The 8 key areas of the Patient’s Bill of Rights
Information for patients
You have the right to accurate and easily understood information about your health plan, health care professionals, and health care facilities. If you speak another language, have a physical or mental disability, or just don’t understand something, help should be given so you can make informed health care decisions.
Choice of providers and plans
You have the right to choose health care providers who can give you high-quality health care when you need it.
Access to emergency services
If you have severe pain, an injury, or sudden illness that makes you believe that your health is in danger, you have the right to be screened and stabilized using emergency services. You should be able to use these services whenever and wherever you need them, without needing to wait for authorization and without any financial penalty.
Taking part in treatment decisions
You have the right to know your treatment options and take part in decisions about your care. Parents, guardians, family members, or others that you choose can speak for you if you cannot make your own decisions.
Respect and non-discrimination
You have a right to considerate, respectful care from your doctor’s, health plan representatives, and other health care providers that does not discriminate against you.
Confidentiality (privacy) of health information
You have the right to talk privately with health care providers and to have your health care information protected. You also have the right to read and copy your own medical record. You have the right to ask that your doctor change your record if it is not correct, relevant, or complete.
Complaints and appeals
You have the right to a fair, fast, and objective review of any complaint you have against your health plan, doctors, hospitals or other health care personnel. This includes complaints about waiting times, operating hours, the actions of health care personnel, and the adequacy of health care facilities.
In a health care system that protects consumer or patients’ rights, patients should expect to take on some responsibilities to get well and/or stay well (for instance, exercising and not using tobacco). Patients are expected to do things like treat health care workers and other patients with respect, try to pay their medical bills, and follow the rules and benefits of their health plan coverage. Having patients involved in their care increases the chance of the best possible outcomes and helps support a high quality, cost-conscious health care system.
According to the presentation at the POPF Midwest PAIN Expo attendee’s learn the importance of the of the “Patient Bill of Rights” (“Patient Rights” 3). (et al.)
We look forward to seeing you next year!
Twinkle VanFleet, Sacramento resident and pain patient. Executive Board Member and Advocacy Director, Power of Pain Foundation.