Dr. Vanila Singh provides insight into COVID rates in children on Cavuto: Coast to Coast.
View the full interview below.
From pain research to daily practice to advocating for policy change, Practical Pain Management speaks to the women pushing pain medicine forward.
We know that women have higher response rates to pain, experience more chronic pain conditions, and face more disparities in research about and care for their pain. Pain in women, along with its bedside partner – mental health – has become so prominent in clinical settings and at-home conversations that HealthyWomen launched a Chronic Pain Advisory Council earlier this year. In just the past few years, PPM's own recent special reports dove into gender bias around women’s pain, gender gaps in pain medicine, and the never-ending search to adequately assess and treat chronic pelvic pain in women. We even launched a new series on overlapping pelvic pain disorders to address growing needs in this often overlooked set of conditions.
We could go on to provide even more statistics and data about how pain is – and is not – treated in women, but instead we are going to pay homage to the women treating pain.
VANILA M. SINGH, MD, MACM
Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine, Stanford School of Medicine
Immediate Former Chief Medical Officer, US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Office of the Assistant Secretary of Health
Chairperson, Best Practices Pain Management Inter-Agency Task Force, HHS
A lot of your work includes translating pain research into policy efforts and patient advocacy. Why do you feel this is important in general, and how does your role as a woman and a member of the BIPOC community drive your ambition and passion for this work?
Dr. Singh: If there is anything that I have learned in my career at the intersection of medicine and policy, it is that policy can often be well-intentioned but often ineffective. It has always been important to me to see well-intentioned policies executed in an impactful way that really helps people. It is up to us as experts in these fields to ensure that important policies do not get watered down or lost in the scuffle of government.
In addition to my medical background, I have always had an interest in history, politics, and economics. These subjects are critical to understanding how the world works and our country has evolved. That is why I had decided to double major at UC Berkeley where I studied molecular & cell biology and economics. I saw the value and importance of market forces and I learned government policy often determines them.
To have a true impact in medicine you must also understand other stakeholders and in particular our government and how it works to shape policy. My education and career experiences have helped me appreciate the importance of seeing the “big picture” to truly understand market forces and then to alter them. To effect positive change for patients and people it always starts with advocacy through policy and education as well as keeping the pulse of the trenches – this is essential for success in these areas.
As far as being a woman, I can say that the road has been filled with hurdles partly related to the field of (pain) medicine but also due to the innate nature of the evolving roles of women in leadership. I feel strongly about the people I care for. My role as a mother, a daughter, a sister, and an aunt has helped me develop the patience and empathy that helps my work with patients. As a woman in this field, I have undoubtedly experienced discrimination that, at one time, I chose to ignore or deny because I simply wanted to avoid the negative repercussions. Despite these challenges, I chose to forge ahead and not let issues distract me from my goals. I am thankful that things are changing, and we can now speak openly about the very real disparities that continue to exist for women.
Despite your great success in the field, including running the Pain Management Inter-Agency Task Force (see a prior conversation) and serving as CMO at HHS, have you ever felt like you were an outsider at a pain conference or professional meeting, by just being a woman?
Dr. Singh: Absolutely, I have had this feeling on many occasions. It was when I finished my residency over 20 years ago – when women were slowly starting to join and surpass men in the ranks in medicine. You hardly ever saw a female leader or chairperson. Back then, women in medicine had to rely on each other for support and you would be lucky to have that sort of mentorship. As women in the field of medicine, we have a shared experience of sometimes but all too commonly being made to feel like an outsider in our own place of work. On the positive side, experiences like these help women build trust with each other. These relationships are often maintained outside of professional activities as well. We stick together because we trust each other and that has helped bring about change and equality for women in this field.
What has frustrated you most throughout your career? And simultaneously, what do you love most about your work – what motivates you?
Dr. Singh: The most frustrating aspect of medicine is not being able to provide the care that you know your patients need. Sadly, I have felt this frustration a lot over the years – often due to issues with the healthcare system, failing treatments, and limited choices. However, over time I realized that a frustrated state is a wasted state and this energy was better channeled to learning and understanding how these decisions were made and I get involved in the process of healthcare policy instead of dwelling on my frustration. I learned how appropriations for funding and resources were being driven to areas like research and development, academia and industry and I used that knowledge of the system to better advocate for patients.
I believe strongly that an essential part of the profession is advocating for a better situation for our patients to have better outcomes. This to me is really the human element of the profession. And, without a doubt, the most fulfilling part of what I do is an impact positive outcome on people’s lives. That is what has fueled my passion for this industry and why I have dedicated my life to this work.
Read the full article on Practical Pain Management.
Dr. Vanila Singh joined Neil Cavuto on FOX Business to discuss how to address vaccine hesitancy, particularly among young people.
Dr. Vanila Singh joined David Asman on FOX Business to discuss the importance of science and objectivity rather than politics when it comes to COVID-19 protocols.
View the full interview below.
Dr. Vanila Singh joined Congressman David Schweikert, founder of the Congressional Telehealth Caucus, for a virtual roundtable to discuss the benefits of telemedicine and ways to continue expanding health care access through technology during COVID-19 and beyond. Telehealth is a key recommendation in the Pain Management Task Force Report.
Learn more and watch the full conversation here.
Dr. Vanila Singh joined Neil Cavuto on FOX Business to provide insight into the coronavirus vaccine rollout and her outlook for the pandemic.
View the full interview below.
Dr. Vanila Singh joined Neil Cavuto on FOX Business to discuss the FDA's pending approval of Moderna's coronavirus vaccine and whether or not the vaccine should be mandatory.
View the full interview below.
Hidden in the shadows of the Covid-19 pandemic is the U.S.’s drug epidemic, which is getting worse. One group that is paying the price for it, but shouldn’t be, are people who live with chronic pain conditions.
The opioid epidemic was initially fueled by the misuse of prescription opioids that were often obtained illegally. In recent years, though, the majority of overdose deaths have been caused by illegal or “street” drugs such as illicit fentanyl and its analogs, heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamines.
About a decade ago, in an effort to address the increase in opioid-related overdose deaths, government agencies at both the state and federal levels clamped down on prescription opioids in a misguided effort to tackle the crisis. The result? Numerous pain patients who were legitimate users of opioids were forced to stop taking these effective painkillers and left to fend for themselves. As a result, some of them turned to the black market, leading to far more overdose deaths.
Continue reading on STAT.
WEST CHESTER, PA / ACCESSWIRE / July 9, 2020 / Virpax® Pharmaceuticals Inc. ("Virpax"), a company specializing in developing pharmaceutical products that incorporate the use of novel drug delivery systems for pain management, today announced the election of Vanila M. Singh, MD, MACM, to its Board of Directors.
Dr. Singh was the immediate past Chief Medical Officer in the US Department of Health and Human Services ("HHS"). She served as the Chairperson of the highly regarded HHS Task Force in conjunction with the Department of Defense and the Veterans Administration. Dr. Singh is a clinical associate professor of Anesthesiology, Pain and Peri-operative Medicine at Stanford and is a teaching mentor at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. She served in medical ethics as well as on scientific editorial boards, committees for the American Society of Regional Anesthesia, American Society of Interventional Pain Physicians, California Medical Association, and the Santa Clara County Medical Association. Dr. Singh, who is double board-certified in pain and anesthesiology, focuses her practice on regional anesthesia and peri-operative, subacute, and the development of chronic pain, with an appreciation for complimentary and traditional medicine approaches that emphasize an individualized patient-centered approach. She completed a masters in academic medicine as part of her professional development to further enhance leadership, educational curriculum development, and interdisciplinary work. Dr. Singh received her medical degree from George Washington University Medical School and her B.A. from U.C. Berkeley in Cell Biology/Economics.
"It is with great pleasure that I welcome Vanila to our Board of Directors. With her extensive experience both in government and academia, in addition to her knowledge and capability in pain management, we expect her to be instrumental in Virpax's ongoing growth and success," commented Chairman and CEO Anthony Mack.
"There is high unmet need globally for innovative, effective pain management. I believe that Virpax's novel drug compounds and new drug delivery systems are addressing this issue and I am excited to join the team in advancing this important mission," stated Dr. Singh.
About Virpax Pharmaceuticals
Virpax Pharmaceuticals is focused on developing branded prescription products and providing more efficient drug treatments using its proprietary cutting-edge delivery technologies designed to satisfy unmet global market needs. Virpax's pipeline consist of non-addictive products being studied to manage musculoskeletal pain, post-operative pain and moderate to severe chronic pain. While Virpax is a market leader in the development of non-addictive pain management products, Virpax is also using its patented delivery technologies to develop therapies to manage PTSD. For more information, please visit www.virpaxpharma.com.
Shana Panzarella, Chief of Staff
Virpax Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
SOURCE: Virpax Pharmaceuticals
Anesthesia Success: Why We Need More Anesthesiologists Involved In Policy And Leadership w. Dr. Vanila Singh
Dr. Vanila Singh was interviewed by Justin Harvey on the Anesthesia Success podcast, whose mission is to dig up valuable information and entertaining stories to allow anesthesia and pain physicians navigate career and finances with confidence.
This week, I talk to Dr. Vanila Singh about her experience in organizational and policy leadership. We talk about what it takes to stay strong when you get involved in politics and the ways that Dr. Singh’s career in anesthesia has uniquely shaped her to become an incredible leader. We also discuss why we need more physicians involved in all sorts of institutional decision-making in both government and healthcare organizations.
You will learn:
Listen to the episode.