OCMA physician honored by specialty society

September 25, 2013

In the examination room as well as the halls of government, Standiford Helm, M.D., has spent more than 30 years as a leader in the field of interventional pain management, something his peers thought worthy of some special recognition.

In late September, Dr. Helm was honored for his years of service to his profession by the California Society of Interventional Pain Physicians (CASIPP), which presenting him with an award that will also be named in his honor.

“I’m extremely humbled and honored that they would do this,” Dr. Helm said. “All the work that I’ve done over the course of my career was to ensure that patients suffering from chronic pain conditions have access to safe, quality care that allows them to live as fully as possible. I certainly didn’t think there would be any personal recognition for it.”

Following this year’s inaugural presentation, the Standiford Helm, M.D., Award, will be presented to individuals who demonstrate outstanding service in promoting and protecting the specialty of Interventional Pain Management. Recipients of the award will be chosen by the society’s Board of Directors based on an exceptional record of commitment to advancing the field of Interventional Pain Management, primarily through the scholarly activity and legislative advocacy that Dr. Helm himself has championed.

“The whole lobbying process, it’s both fun and rewarding,” Dr. Helm said, recalling major lobbying efforts taking place on Capitol Hill as well as at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in Baltimore. “It’s enjoyable to get out there and meet with the people that make these decisions.”

Helm’s involvement in organized medicine, which includes a term as president for CASIPP, and current positions as president of the Orange County Medical Association (OCMA) and a member of the California Medical Association (CMA) Board of Trustees, has afforded him a special opportunity to advocate for the same patients he serves in his own practice.

“We are lucky to have physicians like Dr. Helm as part of CMA and in the workforce treating patients,” said Paul R. Phinney, M.D., CMA president. ""The management of chronic pain is complex but vitally important for affected patients and their families, all of whom stand to benefit greatly by Dr. Helm's tireless commitment.""

Dr. Helm also managed to make quite the name for himself through his role as medical director at The Helm Center for Pain Management in Orange County. In 2012, Dr. Helm was named one of the nation’s “Top Docs” by US News & World Report.

For those that know him well, it’s his ability to balance public and legislative advocacy with the demands of providing quality care for his patients that makes Dr. Helm an excellent ambassador for both pain management and physicians as a whole.

“A lot of physicians don’t get an opportunity to do that,” said Robert McCann, CEO for OCMA. “Dr. Helm is one of the rare breeds that get to do it all.”


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