by Dr. Jackie Gardner-Nix
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, which is influential in the USA in informing health policy, just published a draft report on meditation programs for health and wellbeing. It concluded that research does support the use of mindfulness and meditation in pain management. CBC News contacted us at the NeuroNova Centre on the day this was reported in the Los Angeles Times and wanted to interview us about the work we do with our MBCPM courses in Ontario.
Our own Guy Russel was featured in the piece and did his best to convey some of the essence of why mindfulness and meditation influences pain, hard to do in a 2 minute segment, and he did an amazing job. CBC acknowledged they did not even risk using the word mindfulness as it was too hard to define to viewers! Meditation everyone could understand, so the CBC team ran with that word on the broadcast, but did use Mindfulness in the article on-line.
It may have come as a surprise to alumni that Guy was originally a pain sufferer referred to our courses in 2010. Guy went from being unable to work, due to his pain, which came after an attack of shingles, to being increasingly more functional and less dependent on pain medication due to doing the MBCPM course. He then volunteered his time with our programme for a few months, did contract work for us for a year and joined our team formally in 2012. So he really knows the impact of this work from the inside.
We also acknowledge the 5 alumni: Marija, Donna, Don, Jonathan and Kathryn, who came to St Mikes at short notice and were filmed for the clip on meditation for pain sufferers. Two of them gave interviews, which, though not aired, helped to inform the CBC team of the value of mindfulness. We also thank the CBC team, producer Laura, reporter Kim, and cameraman Peter, who worked with us to get their piece on the air.
If you missed CBC News on Tuesday December 11th, here is the link for the segment and article. It also ran on CBC Radio – The World This Hour and The World at Six, as well as CBQT-FM, CBU-AM, Yahoo! News Canada, CBC.ca.