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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: NO PAIN INITIATIVE

October 30, 2019                                                                                              Contact: Kate Lu

                                                                                                                        240-393-5950

Chinese Culture and Community Service Center Receives Grant to Reduce Opioid Usage

Gaithersburg, MD – The Chinese Culture and Community Service Center (CCACC) recently received a two-year grant from the Community Health Resources Commission in the amount $160,000, with co-funding from Aetna Better Health of Maryland.

This funding is awarded to the CCACC for their “No Pain Initiative” which provides for an integrated approach to chronic pain management, including the reduction and prevention of the use of opioid medications for chronic pain. The program includes individual counseling, psychosocial support groups, acupuncture sessions, and a structured 6-week self- management workshop to empower patients to better manage their chronic pain, and receive non-pharmacologic interventions that could provide pain relief.

In coordinated fashion, participants can also plug into elements of individualized care, such as a review of their pain medications with a psychiatrist or a pharmacist, and the development of a care plan to address co-occurring depression, anxiety or other psychosocial issues.

The No Pain Initiative (NPI) is also made possible by the existing network of volunteer personnel at the Pan Asian Volunteer Health Clinic (PAVHC), such as Dr. Ling Chin. Dr. Shao, and Hsing-chih Su, Pharm D. Dr. Chin comes from a background in public health, FDA, NIH, and preventive medicine. Dr. Shao is a volunteer psychiatrist. Dr. Su is a volunteer pharmacist and leads our pharmacy team. PAVHC is part of CCACC and is a safety net clinic in Montgomery County, and is in partnership with other community organizations for this project.  For example, the Asian Indians for Community Service, Inc (AICS), is the organization partner providing the certified trainers for the self-management workshops (known as the Chronic Pain Self-Management Program – CPSMP). Another key partner is Dr. Chao An, Director of the US Center for Chinese Medicine (USCCM). The Center provides the traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) doctors who perform a TCM evaluation and deliver 3 sessions of acupuncture treatment for NPI participants.

In the next two years, it is anticipated that the “No Pain Initiative” will provide pain management services to a total of 240 individuals. To date, 21 participants have completed the CPSMP workshops, 26 participants have received acupuncture treatment, and many others have received health education, and individual counseling.

This award has been instrumental in CCACC/PAVHC being able to provide partial support for two additional key staff members for the Initiative, namely, Program Director Huixing Lu, LCSW-C and Project Coordinator Hsiaoyin Chen LMSW, according to PAVHC Clinic Director Lu. For more information regarding NPI, please visit our website: http://en.pavhc-dc.org/no-pain-initiative.html

This co-funded grant from the Community Health Resources Commission and Aetna Better Health of Maryland is a part of a larger partnership to expand access to care across the state, especially in underserved communities, in an effort to both reduce health disparities, and increase the capacity of safety net providers to serve vulnerable residents. Jointly, the organizations have co-funded two additional grants in Washington and Charles counties. “We are thrilled to play a part in the community by supporting the Chinese Culture and Community Service Center in their efforts to reduce opioid dependency in the state” said Aetna Better Health of Maryland Chief Executive Officer Angelo Edge.

“The Community Health Resources Commission is thrilled to support Chinese Culture and Community Service Center,” commented Mark Luckner, CHRC Executive Director. “The No Pain Initiative will bring important pain management services to the community and will help reduce the reliance on opioids for chronic pain.”  The grant to CCACC is one of 26 awards totaling $7.2 million issued by the CHRC this year.  Additional information about these awards can be accessed at: https://health.maryland.gov/mchrc/Pages/home.aspx.