In late April 2014, more than 200 participants gathered at the Westin Wall Centre in Richmond, BC in the second of two provincial sessions for the new Practice Support Program (PSP) Pain Management learning module.

Developed under the governance of and with funding support from the joint Doctors of BC/Ministry of Health Shared Care Committee, the Pain Management module emphasizes the importance of a multidisciplinary approach to treatment of patients with persistent pain and supports effective shared care of patients between care providers—module training and resources address the roles of both physicians and allied health professionals.

Attendees at the session included pain and non-pain specialist physicians, allied health professionals, PSP coordinators and staff, patients, and 49 family physicians who will go on to train others regionally as the module is rolled out provincially later this year.

Most physicians receive little or no training in management of persistent pain. With an estimated 30% of all Canadians suffering from chronic pain and patient visits to family doctors for this condition on the rise, the module aims to better equip physicians with the training and tools they need to provide more effective patient care, including non-pharmacological therapies.

Developed by a team comprising specialist and family physicians, psychologists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, and pharmacists, the module content is also relevant to non-pain specialist physicians whose patients may experience chronic pain that has transitioned from acute pain following surgery, illness, or injury.