HOUSTON (May 28, 2015)

This month,the Memorial Hermann Prevention and Recovery Center (PaRC) was presented the James W. West, M.D. Quality Improvement Award in recognition of its Pain Recovery Program at the National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers (NAATP) 2015 Annual Leadership Conference. This year marks Memorial Hermann PaRC’s second time to receive this prestigious recognition. PaRC also received the award in 2011 for its Performance Improvement Program.

Memorial Hermann PaRC’s Pain Recovery Program addresses the biological, psychological and social factors that contribute to chronic pain by teaching patients a variety of pain management techniques to improve their quality of life and achieve pain relief and management without reliance on addictive medications.

“The goal of the Pain Recovery Program is to enable chronic pain sufferers to manage their pain and to live a life without depending on addictive medications,” said Matt Feehery, Senior Vice President and CEO of Memorial Hermann PaRC. “Our staff puts forth tremendous efforts with every patient to work toward that goal. We are honored to receive the James W. West, M.D. Quality Improvement Award.”

The Memorial Hermann PaRC staff identified a need in its patient community more than four years ago and began tailoring a program to simultaneously address patients’ chronic pain conditions and addiction problems. By integrating physical therapy and other pain-reducing therapies with its behavioral treatment program, the Pain Recovery Program has been able to help this patient group.

“This award exemplifies PaRC’s continued commitment to quality excellence,” said Keith Alexander, Senior Vice President and Regional President at Memorial Hermann. “Accessible, quality chronic pain management alternatives directly impact patients and address the prescription drug abuse crisis facing the United States today.”

An estimated 116 million people suffer from chronic pain in the United States and painkillers are abused by 5.1 million users, more than any other prescription medication, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). Many of the Pain Recovery Program’s patients were introduced to prescription narcotics by virtue of their chronic pain ailment, according to Memorial Hermann PaRC.

“Our patients are finding ways to live more meaningful lives and to incorporate effective pain management strategies without further reliance on addictive pain medications,” Feehery said. “For many patients and families, the improvement in their condition and the opportunity for a positively enhanced quality of life beyond treatment has been dramatic and life altering.”

Memorial Hermann PaRC found that 95 percent of patients treated in its Pain Recovery Program in the last two years reported long-term suffering (more than two years) and complications from chronic pain prior to treatment, including 43 percent who had endured chronic pain for 10 to 15 years, or longer. All Pain Recovery Program participants were dependent on addictive prescription medications (68 percent) or alcohol and illicit drugs (32 percent). Approximately 65 percent of the Pain Recovery Program participants met their pain management goals and 75 percent met their physical therapy goals despite many being deconditioned from years of physical inactivity. None of the participants experienced any of the side effects caused by addictive narcotic medications while in the Pain Recovery Program.

The James W. West, M.D. Quality Improvement Award was established in 2000 by the NAATP and the Vendome Group, LLC, which publishes Behavioral Healthcare and other publications focused on addiction treatment. Dr. West, Medical Director Emeritus of the Betty Ford Center, is a long-time quality advocate, according to the NAATP.

For more information about the Memorial Hermann PaRC Pain Recovery Program, call 1-877-464-7272 or go to http://parc.memorialhermann.org.