Moving beyond opioids to complementary and integrative services for chronic pain care
In 2018, two million people in the US suffered from an opioid use disorder and more than 130 people died every day from opioid-related drug overdoses. This remains an ongoing problem and as a result, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has announced a plan to combat the opioid crisis. This plan focuses on prioritizing the advancement of better practices for pain management and improving access to these therapies and services.
In response, different national health organizations are considering the use of complementary and integrative therapies as a solution to eliminating the need for an opioid or reducing the number of opiates prescribed for chronic pain. With funding from the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) through the 2019 Opiate Response Law, Hennepin Healthcare has begun its own timely project.
Titled NO PAIN – Non-Opioid Pain Alleviation Information Network – Minnesota, this project seeks to locate complementary and integrative health services and providers across Minnesota in order to map them on a statewide website. The goal of this website is to provide an educational resource that can be used across the state by patients, providers, insurance groups, and health systems alike to help promote alternative to opioids for chronic pain management.
The NO PAIN MN Project Director as well as Chair of Internal Medicine at Hennepin Healthcare, Dr. Arti Prasad shares, “This project serves as an antidote to the ongoing opioid epidemic. We will provide statewide mapping of the comprehensive resources for non-narcotic pain management to equally empower patients and providers towards a path of ‘do no harm’ pain alleviation. We aspire to demonstrate that pain management and healing is possible without narcotics.”
As part of the project, the NO PAIN MN team further seeks to connect with and learn from patients experiencing chronic pain as well as other stakeholders in chronic pain management to gain a better understanding of the barriers and facilitators to this care. If you are currently experiencing chronic pain and wish to share your experience, please reach out to us at: firstname.lastname@example.org or 612-873-3066.
Medical Director of Integrative Health at Hennepin Healthcare and NO PAIN MN Project Co-Director, Dr. Richard Printon adds, “As a chiropractor, I treat patients with chronic pain on a daily basis. I personally have seen how evidence-based, non-opioid care can and does alleviate pain. I am thrilled to be part of a project developing a resource (NO PAIN MN website) where patients and providers alike can navigate their journey to non-opioid pain management.”
Arti Prasad, MD, FACP, is Chief of Internal Medicine at Hennepin Healthcare. Dr. Prasad has special interests in integrative health and culturally-inspired patient care, inter-professional education, community engagement, and physician well-being.
Richard Printon, DC, is Medical Director of Integrative Health at Hennepin Healthcare. As part of his chiropractic practice, he is responsible for integrating chiropractic services into a multi-disciplinary medical setting.