By Meg Jordan, PhD, RN, CWP, ACC, NBC–HWC March 4, 2019

We recently received a press release from UCSF, outlining the results of a 2019 study, published in the Journal of General Medicine, which found that "group support, acupuncture, mindfuless, massage, and gentle exercise may offer safer, extra relief to patients on prescription opiods."

We read the study with interest, not least because our students were providers in the program studied: they offered health coaching to low-income, at-risk patients with chronic pain at the Tom Waddell Urban Health Clinic, just blocks from the CIIS campus. While other practitioners provided the hands-on modalities, our students were asked to check in with patients weekly by phone, and to attend team meetings with the practitioners, to support the patients' connection to and understanding of the alternative therapies offered to them.

We are proud that our students provided such important support to people in our community. We are equally delighted to know that holistic, non-medication-based approaches can ease suffering in people living with chronic pain.

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