The following is inspired by the Partners for Understanding Pain
WRITING LETTERS TO MEMBERS OF CONGRESS AND GOVERNORS can have a tremendous impact and create significant positive change. As many people do not take the time or effort to do so, writing even one letter can have real influence- remember our government representatives work for us, the people. Hearing directly from constituents matters. It is vital for the welfare of not only ourselves but the entire chronic pain community-patients, care providers and the medical community that supports and sustains us- that we bring to the attention of our elected officials the enormous influence pain has upon health care costs, economic productivity, and human suffering.
With our new President and the legislators who work with his new administration to form their agenda, along with the push to “repeal and replace” the Affordable Healthcare Act aka Obamacare, now is a crucial time to make our voices heard.
TOGETHER OUR VOICES ARE STRONG!
To contact your congresstional representative and senators, log on to https://www.congress.gov/members
Below is a sample letter that you can copy and use. Go ahead and modify it to reflect your own concerns as appropriate.
Share this information with members of your support team, your family and friends and ask them to write letters too. Giving them the contact information and a copy of your letter may help.
You may also wish to post the letter on your social media account(s) to encourage others in your circle to join in and help bring the issue of pain to the attention of our government and too, plant seeds within our society to bring attention to the condition of chronic pain and the magnitude of its impact on our society- beyond the media’s laser-like focus on the issue of painkiller abuse ( a small component of the much larger pain management issue).
THE MORE THE MERRIER!
Be sure to include your name (or the organization that you are representing).
City, State, Zip
Dear Senator or Governor (last name),
As you prepare to begin your work with the new administration and too, addressing the affordable Healthcare Act, I ask for your support in considering the importance and impact of chronic pain on our society.
Pain is a major health issue. It is the number-one cause of adult disability in the United States and affects one in three people or about 100 million Americans. According to an omnibus survey of 1,000 Americans conducted for the Partners for Understanding Pain, 34 percent of respondents said they currently live with ongoing pain. In spite of its pervasiveness, few physicians receive more than a few hours of formal training in pain management
Pain is a major economic issue. According to the National Institute of Medicine report, Relieving Pain in America: A Blueprint for Transforming Prevention, Care, Education, and Research, pain costs more than $600 billion annually in lost workdays, medical expenses, and other benefit costs. Skyrocketing health care costs leave some, especially senior citizens, minorities, and the urban and rural poor, unable to get treatment that can help them manage their pain. Also, for millions of Americans pain medications are a vital part of their healthcare regimen, and the use of Opiates should not be villionized by the mid-deeds of the few. Pain is real and can be devastating in a number of ways. The seriousness and cost of the problem demand attention.
Pain is a major social issue, with an impact, well beyond the individual, on his or her spouse or partner, children, family, and community.
Partners for Understanding Pain brings together both health care professionals and patient organizations to build understanding of chronic, acute, and cancer pain issues and the impact of pain today. For more information about Partners for Understanding Pain, call 1800-533-3231 or visit http://www.understandingpain.org.
We ask you to support our efforts to have pain taken seriously as you craft new healthcare legislation and too, by declaring September National Pain Awareness Month.
Thank you for your consideration to this very important issue.