In This Section

Chronic Pain Management

Community Chronic Pain Management Program

Chronic Pain imposes a significant burden of disease on the community with 1 in 5 people reporting to experience chronic or persistent pain. Current research supports small group education sessions for people suffering low to moderate distress and interference in quality of life, as an effective tool for management of persisting pain.

Nepean Blue Mountains Primary Health Network in conjunction with the NSW Agency for Clinical Innovation, is offering a series of small group chronic pain management programs. Each program consists of:

  • A 3 hour face-to-face education and exercise session once a week that will run over 6 consecutive weeks
  • Small group size – max 10 participants
  • Program facilitators hold follow up sessions with participants at 4 and 12 weeks post program

Qualified Allied Health Professionals deliver the program which aims to:

  • Improve functional capacity through education and exercise
  • Assist participants to identify goals, barriers and boundaries, and to develop crisis management strategies and self-help routines

Participants are provided with the following:

  • Workbook which includes goal charts, exercise charts, suitable exercises and a list of resources including websites for further information relating to self-management of chronic pain
  • Relaxation techniques and assistance with setting up self-help routines at home

Referring GPs will receive a report following the program that details the clients' progress through the program to assist with follow-up and continued cycle of care.

The below table sets out inclusion and exclusion criteria when assessing patient suitability to the program:

Suitable patients


  • Patients identified by their GP as having chronic pain
  • Pain longer than 3 months or beyond the normal healing time of an injury resulting in declining functional and psychological well-being (e.g., musculoskeletal pain, whiplash, neuropathic pain, fibromyalgia)
  • Patients with an Orebro Musculoskeletal score of ≤50
  • Independently mobile
  • Ability and willingness to attend all sessions
  • Low to moderate complexity
  • Patients undergoing active treatment for cancer, infection or fractures
  • Patients on high dose opioids (> 60mgs oral morphine equivalent per day)
  • Worker’s compensation or third party insurance claims

How to Refer Patients

Patients must be referred directly to the appropriate program facilitator. Please do not fax or email referrals to the Nepean Blue Mountains PHN. Included with the referral form must also be the patients' completed Musculoskeletal Orebro Short Form.

Links to the RTF referral forms that can be uploaded into your clinical software are below. If you require assistance loading this form into your clinical software please contact your General Practice Support Officer.

Referral documentation should be sent to the appropriate program facilitator.

(We are working on updating HealthPathways with the appropriate referral pathway information and will update this page as soon as it becomes available).

Dates of Programs

The first Community Chronic Pain Management Group programs started in 2019 and will continue throughout 2020. The program facilitators in each region set the dates and times for each program. For further information on 2020 program dates please contact the appropriate program facilitator.

Facilitator Details:



Fax Number




IOH Penrith

Joanne Slater

02 4732 3011

02 4722 9300

Blue Mountains


Joanne Slater

02 4732 3011

02 4722 9300


Hawkesbury Community Health Centre

Tina Thew

02 4560 5713

0402 496 024