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About the Pain Management Network

The Pain Management Network brings together consumers and clinicians to promote equity of access to pain management services for patients with chronic pain and determine priorities for action. It also develops and supports implementation of new evidence-based models of care to improve integration and co-ordination of care between hospital-based specialist multidisciplinary pain clinics and community and primary health services. The Pain Network offers specialist care within a pain clinic environment but also aims to develop knowledge management strategies aimed at the community, addressing the stigma associated with chronic pain, and provides resources for primary care practitioners to better manage patients with chronic pain.

Our People

Michael Nicholas

Michael Nicholas, Co-Chair
Director, Pain Education & Pain Management Programs
Pain Management Research Institute
Sydney Medical School - Northern
The University of Sydney

Philip Siddall

Philip Siddall, Co-Chair
Director, Pain Management Service
Greenwich Hospital

The ACI Pain Management Network is led by an executive committee, which includes staff specialists, general practitioners, nurses, allied health professionals and consumers.

There are now three working groups that have been established to represent aspects of the continuum of care and the priorities identified in the Model of Care for the statewide plan. There is broad representation from consumers and clinicians across the spectrum on these committees.

The network has more than 74 members and includes the peak NSW non-government organisation Chronic Pain Australia, Pain Australia, consumers, local health districts and specialty network governed health corporations in NSW.

Priorities

  • To develop an integrated model of care for pain management in NSW.
  • To develop knowledge management strategies aimed at the community to address the stigma associated with chronic pain.
  • To provide resources for primary care practitioners to better manage patients with chronic pain.
  • To develop a data collection system that can reflect outcomes, processes and resourcing needs of tertiary chronic pain services in NSW.
  • To develop formal triage and screening processes and protocols to identify patients at risk of developing chronic pain and to refer people to the appropriate level of service.

Achievements

  • Development of an evidence base for a Model of Care by working in collaboration with the Sax Institute.
  • Development of a statewide plan for chronic pain management.
  • Establishment of three statewide working groups to identify and address issues associated with pain management.
  • Collaborating closely with the peak NSW non government organisation, Chronic Pain Australia, and recruiting direct consumer input to the network.
  • Collaborating with clinicians to develop a consensus model of care.

Background

The ACI Pain Management Network was established in February 2010 in response to an inequity of access to pain management services for patients with chronic pain.

Expert consensus and a growing body of research indicated best-practice pain management required coordinated interdisciplinary assessment and management.

For each patient this means; the management of physical, psychological and environmental factors. While this model of care is offered in specialist multi-disciplinary pain clinics, improved links with the community and primary sector are required to optimize care.