NEWS | August 11, 2017

UC Davis programs to focus on pain management

Educational coursework geared toward primary care clinicians


Three educational programs are now open to primary care providers with an interest in strengthening their skills in pain management and responsible opioid prescribing:

Programs for clincians interested in pain management will be taking place on UC Davis' Sacramento campus. Programs for clincians interested in pain management will be taking place on UC Davis' Sacramento campus.

  • Train-the-Trainer: Primary Care Pain Management Fellowship
  • Essentials of Primary Care Pain Management Continuing Medical Education (CME) Conference
  • Medication-Assisted Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder

Sponsored by the UC Davis Center for Advancing Pain Relief, the goal of the programs is to stem the tide of the national epidemic of inadequate, and often harmful, pain management and help change how pain is addressed by health providers and taught by educators nationwide.

"Pain is a part of all of the primary health disciplines, but not the primary part of any. Over the years, we have emphasized the responsibility to recognize pain without the knowledge," said Scott Fishman, center director. "We know that pain is the main reason people visit clinicians. We must better equip our physicians with knowledge to treat and manage pain of their patients."

Train-the-Trainer: The Center for Advancing Pain Relief is launching the Train-the-Trainer: Primary Care Pain Management Fellowship in September. This one-year, continuing education program is designed for primary-care-oriented trainees and providers. The curriculum targets the most frequently encountered pain management issues with a significant emphasis on addressing the epidemic of prescription drug abuse and responsible opioid prescribing.

"This new train-the-trainers fellowship tackles issues impacting public health and safety and the economic viability of care that supports healthy people rather than care that reacts to illness," said David Copenhaver, fellowship director. "Participants will be armed with materials to serve as a resource for responsible opioid prescribing and pain management in their clinics."

Clinicians will benefit from distance learning, remote office hours and one-on-one mentoring to talk through difficult cases they experience in their clinics. They can also tap into a network of experts in pain medicine, internal medicine, physical rehabilitation, psychology and psychiatry. Participants can complete the course without a reduction in their current clinic schedules. For more information, click here.

Essentials of Primary Care Pain Management: Fellows will join other primary care clinicians in a two-day CME conference, "Essentials of Primary Care Pain Management," which integrates recent scientific data with current clinic practice regarding pain management, addiction and responsible opioid prescribing. While geared toward primary care clinicians, the conference is open to all clinicians and is scheduled from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Sept. 16-17, in the UC Davis Sacramento campus Education Building.

The objectives for the conference include how to evaluate pain, how to prescribe opioids for chronic pain in a responsible manner, develop an awareness of other treatment modalities besides medications, and identify the connection between chronic pain and depression or anxiety. To register, visit

Medication Assisted Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder: Prior to the conference, UC Davis is partnering with the American Osteopath Academy of Addiction Medicine, to host a pre-conference on office-based Medication Assisted Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder. Those who complete the course will receive 4.25 hours toward obtaining a waiver for prescribing buprenorphine. To register for the half-day course at the Courtyard by Marriott, located adjacent to UC Davis Health, visit

The UC Davis Center for Advancing Pain Relief leverages the vast expertise of scholars and scientists in medicine, nursing and other health-science disciplines, to discover and deliver the knowledge and tools to effectively help people manage pain and improve their quality of life. For more information on the center, visit