Monday, December 12, 2011

New Rights for People in Pain

The Declaration Montreal: Access to pain management is a fundamental human right is the title of a recent article in the prestigious journal PAIN (2011, 152, p. 2673) by Doctors Cousins and Lynch.

This article includes the Declaration of Montreal, created at the International Pain Summit of the International Society for the Study of Pain (IASP). Eighty-four countries supported this most basic of human rights.

This essence of this declaration is that health care providers, governments and health care organizations are obligated to provide adequate treatment and management of pain, even when it is difficult to diagnose the actual cause of the pain.

The Summit leaders also recognized that chronic pain, with or without diagnosis is highly stigmatized - and that all levels of health care should work to reduce this stigma.

Thank you to the IASP for their continuing dedication to the millions of people who live, all over the world, each day in pain.

Yours with Care - Michael

Monday, December 5, 2011

Be The Voice

Be the Voice - for those who have no voice. This is the slogan for an ad for the World Wildlife Fund. It is incredible that so few words can say so much.

Many people who live in pain also feel that they have no voice. They feel powerless in the face of constant pain and powerless in their ability to get the help the need.

Health professionals have power. They know the system and have the energy to fight for what their patients need. Let's use this power to do the best work we can. Let's use this power to care. Let's use this power to put our opinions on paper to help validate the true needs of people who live every day in pain.

We can make a difference. I see it every day.

Caring IS good medicine. Thank you to the late Bill Moyers for his wise words.

Yours with care - Michael