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20 June 2017

Chronic Pain Management Pilot Project for Northern Yorke Peninsula

A chronic pain management pilot project is coming to the Northern Yorke Peninsula to focus on specialist care to help those in need.

Country SA PHN is partnering with the Royal Adelaide Hospital (RAH) Pain Management Unit to deliver the pilot project, for the first time, to the towns of Moonta, Wallaroo, Kadina and Port Broughton to improve the effectiveness of chronic pain management.

“Chronic pain is a particularly large health problem in rural South Australia. However, there’s a gap in the delivery of specialist chronic pain management in regional areas,” said Country SA PHN Chief Executive, Kim Hosking.

“We’re pleased to fund this project with the RAH Pain Management Unit to bridge this gap and provide Northern Yorke Peninsula residents with specialist care.”

General Practice (GP) is on the front-line of chronic pain management in rural areas. As such, the aim of this project is to implement a GP led, practice based multi-disciplinary pain management program in rural South Australia. Specialized RAH Pain Management Unit staff will provide outreach services for patients with highly complex chronic pain management needs.

The RAH Pain Management Unit is a multidisciplinary service that enables patients and their primary care providers to better manage chronic pain. With a GP referral, the service comprehensively supports patients whose chronic pain has significant impacts on activities of everyday life.

“The multi D Team at the RAH Pain Management Unit is very enthusiastic about engaging with this project as country SA patients have missed out on services in the past. This is the first step in correcting this situation,” said RAH Pain Medicine Specialist, Dr Tim Semple.

“Working closely with local health providers will give us all the opportunity to better understand the breadth of the problem and how to implement local solutions.”

The National Pain Strategy described chronic pain as “Australia’s third most costly health problem and arguably the developed world’s largest ‘undiscovered’ health priority”.

A national survey of Australian GP estimates the prevalence of chronic pain in patients is almost 20 per cent, with the majority relying on medication. A third of these patients are using opioids to try to manage their pain – despite opioids efficacy and safety for non-cancer pain not being supported by the evidence.

For further information please contact Noelene Cooper, Cross Portfolio Project Manager - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Or you can contact your local GP.

Media Inquiries: Kate Dorsey, Michels Warren PR on 0417 811 010

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