VCU nurse clinician selected for Mayday Pain & Society Fellowship

Patrick Coyne, R.N.

Photo courtesy of VCU Creative Services
Patrick Coyne, R.N. Photo courtesy of VCU Creative Services

Patrick Coyne, R.N., clinical nurse specialist and clinical director of the Thomas Palliative Care Unit at the Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center, has been selected for the first year of the Mayday Fund's Mayday Pain & Society Fellowship.

The three-year fellowship was established by the Mayday Fund to provide new leaders in the pain-management field with tools that will enable them to reach the broader public.

Coyne will join five other fellows from around the United States and Canada who are established experts in a wide range of pain-management disciplines, including anesthesiology, neurology, psychiatry and pediatric pain care.

During the fellowship, Coyne will attend an intensive four-day workshop in Washington, D.C., in September, and will work closely with a communications firm for five months afterward to learn how to work with local and national media, to write opinion editorials, to develop relationships with university public affairs and government relations leadership and to interact with state legislators and members of Congress.

Coyne and the other fellows will develop skills to advocate and communicate on many of the pain issues they deal with everyday, including the undertreatment of pain, pediatric pain, chronic pain, palliative care, the treatment of pain with prescription medications, alternative treatments for pain and disparities in pain treatment.

As a clinical nurse specialist at VCU, Coyne has initiated and overseen the multi-disciplinary Cancer Pain Center within the Massey Cancer Center, which handles referrals on difficult cancer-and-HIV-pain management situations from throughout the mid-Atlantic Region. Coyne also is clinical director of the Thomas Palliative Care Unit, where he goes on rounds with the oncology team and assists with identifying patient needs, such as discharge and nursing requirements and augmenting pain and symptom management.

In addition to conducting research, Coyne also has published numerous articles related to pain management, symptom control and issues in end-stage disease. Coyne's other recent honors include being listed in Richmond Magazine's Top Docs issue, which came out in April. The listing featured the results from a regional survey conducted by the magazine, which asked more than 3,000 licensed medical doctors and osteopaths which specialists they would choose if they or their family members needed medical treatment. The magazine received 515 completed surveys, and Coyne was recognized as one of top pain-management providers.

Coyne received his Bachelor of Science degree in nursing from Niagara University in New York, and his Master's in the Science of Nursing with a functional area in administration from the College of Nursing and Allied Health at the University of Texas at El Paso. He is a resident of Rockville, Va.

Established in 1992, the Mayday Fund is dedicated to further Shirley Steinman Katzenbach's commitment to social and medical causes and her special interest in the treatment of pain. Over the last 10 years, Mayday has supported many different projects, including surveys of public attitudes to pain and its treatment, role model and documentation programs, assistance to public and professional advocacy groups, and clinical and academic research.