Advil launched the Advil Pain Equity Project Tuesday morning, committing to a multi-year initiative to address pain inequity and racial bias in healthcare.

For its debut, the Advil Pain Equity Project has unveiled the Believe My Pain campaign centered on the stories of Etisyai, Mark and Inaayah, all of whom are patients who have experienced pain inequity.

The campaign also involves contributions from journalist and advocate Elaine Welteroth as well as Dr. Uché Blackstock, a physician and thought leader on bias and racism in medicine. Welteroth hosted a digital roundtable with the patient advocates participating in the campaign, which can be found on the Believe My Pain website. 

The microsite includes educational resources for patients suffering from pain inequity and has materials for physicians to be able to combat biases in diagnosis and treatment.

System pain bias has lingered throughout the U.S. healthcare system for years and impacted the lives of thousands of millions of Black patients in varying degrees of severity.

The effort is supported by recent research Advil conducted in partnership with the Morehouse School of Medicine to understand the widespread prevalence of pain inequity among Black patients.

The study found that 93% of Black patients said pain has an impact on their day-to-day life while 83% said they’ve had a negative experience while seeking help to manage their pain.  Additionally, 75% of respondents said they believe there is a bias in how pain is diagnosed and treated.

Another striking data point was that 66% of respondents said their pain became worse or stayed the same after a negative experience with a healthcare professional.

In an effort to develop patient resources and medical school course development, Advil has awarded grants through the Advil Pain Equity Fund to the Morehouse School of Medicine and Blkhlth, a nonprofit focused on challenging racism in healthcare.

When it comes to external communications, Advil is featuring the patient roundtable on its social media channels and securing earned media spots for both Welteroth and Blackstock. Both of them, as well as Advil, Morehouse and Blkhlth, are promoting the effort on social media as well.