NIH launches HEAL Initiative, doubles funding to accelerate scientific solutions to stem national opioid epidemic
This NIH initiative called HEAL (Helping to End Addiction Long-Term) is an aggressive, trans-agency effort to speed scientific solutions to stem the national opioid public health crisis. Toward this effort, NIH is nearly doubling funding for research on opioid misuse/addiction and pain. NIH’s efforts contribute to a government-wide push to meet the President’s goal of ending the opioid crisis.
HEAL will bolster research funding across NIH, and NCCIH will provide support in the area of “Prevent Addiction through Enhanced Pain Management.” As the lead for NIH’s Pain Management Collaboratory, a multi-agency initiative with the U.S. Department of Defense and Department of Veterans Affairs, NCCIH’s role will be to continue to define and support best practices for pain management using nondrug and integrated therapies for specific pain conditions, particularly to address the needs of service members and veterans.
An analysis of data from a large, national survey provides insights into factors associated with the type of foot pain known as plantar fasciitis and its pharmaceutical treatment. Although data from the survey show that less than one percent of U.S. adults experienced plantar fasciitis pain in the previous month, as many as 41 percent of plantar fasciitis respondents used prescription pain medications during that time (but only 6 percent reported using them specifically for plantar fasciitis pain). The analysis was conducted by the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) and was published in The Journal of Pain.
Tai chi results in similar or greater improvement in fibromyalgia symptoms when compared to aerobic exercise, according to a new study from Tufts University and Brown University. Aerobic exercise, a core part of standard fibromyalgia treatment, is the most commonly prescribed nondrug treatment for the disorder, which can involve widespread pain, tenderness, fatigue, and other symptoms. Findings from the new study, however, suggest that tai chi is another therapeutic option. The study, partially funded by the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH), was published in the BMJ.