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Chronic Pain Management

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.

Over the next 2 years, we will be piloting a series of chronic pain management programs with the NSW Health - Agency for Clinical Innovation. Each program is delivered in a 3 hour face-to-face session once a week that will run over 6 consecutive weeks. Sessions consists of theory and experiential learning, covering the basics of CPM neurophysiology and research explained with functional relevance. The program will help participants to identify goals, barriers and boundaries, crisis management strategies and self-help routines.

Participants will be provided with a workbook and are expected to attend all face to face session as well as two follow up support sessions at 4 and 12 weeks post program. Participants will finish the program with skills in relaxation, stretching, exercise and with a list of resources (website links and books) to help establish and maintain routines at home. Referring GPs will receive a report that details the client’s progress through the program to assist with follow-up and continued cycle of care.

For the pilot of this program, the following is a guide as to which patients may be suitable for inclusion, and which may not.

Suitable patients

Exclusions

  • Patients identified by their GP as having chronic pain
  • Pain longer than 6 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).
  • Independently mobile
  • Understanding of the written and spoken materials presented
  • Ability and willingness to attend all sessions
  • Low to moderate complexity
  • Worker’s compensation or third party insurance claims
  • Opioids > 60mgs oral morphine equivalent per day
  • Inability to participate in a group
  • Presence of significant mental health disorders
  • Significant disability

 

If you’re based in Hawkesbury and have a patient that may be interested or that you think would benefit from this program, please contact Tina Thew, Community Chronic Pain Management Program Lead Facilitator at Hawkesbury District Health Service at tina.thew@sjog.org.au or by phone (02) 4560 5555

If you’re based in the Blue Mountains or Penrith and have a patient that may be interested or that you think would benefit from this program, please contact Joanne Slater, Community Chronic Pain Management Program Lead Facilitator at IOH Injury & Occupational Health at jslater@ioh.net or by phone (02) 4722 9300