The Central Oregon Behavioral Health Consortium (COBHC) is hosting a one-day quarterly training with Know About Pain ™ to help you change the conversation about pain with your patients and clients, moving towards self-empowerment. Instructors Nora Stern, MS PT, and Laura Heesacker, LCSW, will introduce the basics of pain science, its relationship to trauma, and the power of reconceptualizing pain with your client to shift the plan of care towards active interventions, and away from passive treatment and hopelessness.

This one-day training will use the popular Oregon Patient Pain Education Toolkit, the trauma-informed, shared-decision-making patient content developed through the Oregon Health Authority, to provide consistent language and create a structure for care.  We will introduce Focused Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and motivational interviewing skills for working with pain and use case studies to explore care planning and scripting.

This training is appropriate for behavioral health practitioners, rehab therapists (PT/OT/speech), primary care, nursing and peer support, and interdisciplinary conversation will be encouraged.  Come learn how to create a collaborative pain care plan that shifts pain care away from medication towards an active return to a value-driven life.


Nora Stern, MS, PT, Director “Know About Pain” Consulting & Pain Education

Nora Stern, PT, MS PT, is a pain educator and physical therapist with more than 25 years helping people living with pain and the clinicians with whom they work.   She is director of Know About Pain Consultation and Pain Education Productstm (knowaboutpain,com) and past-Chair  of the Oregon State Pain Management Commission and past program manager for pain education at Providence Oregon.   Nora helps clinicians of all disciplines to adopt new language for guiding our patients with complex and persistent pain, with the goal of reframing, simplifying and improving our care plans, while saving time and decreasing job stress.   At Know About Pain, Nora develops pain education across the entire care continuum including inpatient, outpatient and emergency services, working with hospitals, county health services and individual clinicians, continuing the cross-disciplinary training that she conducted with Providence Oregon.  Nora has trained primary care providers, behavioral health therapists, rehab therapists (PT/OT/speech), peer support, nursing, and massage therapists.  

In collaboration with the Oregon Pain Management Commission and Oregon Health Authority, Nora designed patient education material for the Oregon Patient Pain Education Toolkit housed at Oregon Pain Guidance.  These tools  are integrated with the pain education module of the Oregon State Pain Management Commission, OPMC Changing the Conversation about Pain (1 CME/CNE/CEU.) 

As a physical therapist, Nora has treated patients with persistent pain and developed treatment innovation in rehab for pain care over her 25 year career.  It has been a privilege for Nora to be a part of the broad transformation of pain care happening in the state of Oregon with the many brilliant thinkers in our state.  

Laura Heesacker, LCSW, Founder Bridges to Wellbeing

Laura is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with over 30 years of experience. Laura is a practicing mental health therapist, consultant, mentor, and clinical supervisor across the pacific northwest. As a consultant, Laura provides technical assistance and mentoring to organizations in the development of full spectrum integrated behavioral health programs that include state of the art treatment for pain and substance use challenges. Laura is a founding partner at Bridges to Well-Being, a multi-service group behavioral health practice serving individuals and families with innovative, flexible, and compassionate care.  Laura was a founding member of the Oregon Pain Guidance (OPG) and has presented multiple times across the state and nation on the topic of chronic pain.  She lives in Southern Oregon and spends her time with her partner, adult children, and furry friends. She enjoys gathering with family and friends and hiking the trails the brim the hamlet she calls home.


Training topics and content: 

  • Basics of pain science and pain education
  • Overview of Oregon State patient pain education toolkit,
  • Demonstration of shared workflow
  • Practice with phrasing and shared decision making
  • Use of functional assessment tools (PROMIS, PEG, STarT)
  • Skills:
    • Activity and movement
      • Principles of pacing to return to activity
      • Mindfulness and mindful movement
    • Values, Motivational Interviewing and FACT Skills in Pain Care
  • Case study, Discussion and Q and A


  • Review contemporary pain science and identify role of biopsychosocial model of pain in a multi-disciplinary plan of care.
  • Introduce new state resources for pain education for clinicians and patients.
  • Learn and practice phrasing to change the conversation about pain towards an active approach to pain care
  • Explore opportunities to use state resources to support workflow modifications
  • Understand discipline-specific opportunities to decrease clinician burden and utilize team-based care.

To Register Click Here!

*For more information on this event please email