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CSH Will Lead $14M NIH Study of Non-drug Treatments for Low Back Pain

September 21, 2017

The Earl E. Bakken Center for Spirituality & Healing (CSH), a Consortium member, has been awarded the first phase of an $11.2 million grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to study non-drug approaches to chronic low back pain, which could lead to reduced opioid use. Funding will support a Clinical Coordinating Center at the University of Minnesota and the University of Pittsburgh for a national multi-site clinical trial examining the effectiveness of spinal manipulation therapies (SMT) and supported self-management (SSM) compared to usual medical care. An additional $2.8 million was allocated for a Data Coordinating Center (DCC) at the University of Washington. “Identifying effective management and prevention strategies for back pain is a huge challenge,” said lead investigator Gert Bronfort, DC, PhD. “By examining promising, safe and accessible non-drug treatments . . . we hope to prevent acute low back pain from becoming chronic and to reduce over-reliance on medications and unnecessary surgeries.” According to the World Health Organization, low back pain is the leading cause of disability worldwide. One study of back patients in the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine found more than half of the patients used opioids to treat pain.

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Georgopoulos Presented with American Legion's Top Award

August 30, 2017

Dr. Apostolos Georgopoulos, MD, PhD, received the American Legion’s Distinguished Service Medal on Aug. 22 during the organization’s national convention in Reno, Nev. Georgopoulos is director of the Brain Sciences Center at the Minneapolis Veterans Health Administration (VHA) and holds the American Legion Family-University of Minnesota Brain Sciences Chair. He is also a faculty member at the Center for Cognitive Sciences, a Consortium member. For decades, Georgopolous has conducted research into the mechanisms behind PTSD, Gulf War Illness, alcohol abuse and other ailments among veterans. The Distinguished Service Medal recognizes outstanding service to the nation and programs of the American Legion, and is the organization's highest honor.

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Disability and End-of-life Medical Options

July 26, 2016

In an editorial in today's MinnPost, Bobbi Jacobsen, who has lived with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) for 20 years, commemorates the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act 26 years ago today by calling upon "the leaders of major disability organizations. . . to recognize that we want to be empowered in our end-of-life medical options, too." The article was written to raise awareness and support for Minnesota's Compassionate Care Act, which is modeled on an Oregon law that permits aid in dying but not assisted suicide. Jacobsen notes that the former only applies to terminally ill people: "Medical aid in dying applies to people who want more than anything to live, but a deadly disease is ending their lives." The bill was introduced in the Minnesota state legislature during the last session and was heard by the Senate Health Committee. It was withdrawn before a vote was taken, but is expected to be introduced again during the next session, which begins in January, 2017. 

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JLME Summer 2007

Genetics & Disability Insurance: Ethics, Law & Policy

This grant was awarded to the Center for Bioethics and Joint Degree Program in Law, Health & the Life Sciences to complete a comprehensive investigation of the ethical, legal, and policy issues in the use of genetic information in private and public disability insurance and to recommend policies based on the findings.

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