September 2021 Pain BC Newsletter
From our Executive Director, Maria Hudspith
Earlier this year, Health Canada released An Action Plan for Pain in Canada. A core pillar of that plan is a call to improve pain education for health professionals in order to improve care and reduce stigma for people living with pain. Clinical education has always been central to Pain BC’s mission. Our wide range of continuing education opportunities are based on a laddered strategy that aims to increase chronic pain capacity among health care providers of all disciplines.

This fall, Pain BC is engaged in a number of important clinical education initiatives. We are once again partnering with Providence Health Care to present Interdisciplinary Pain Education Day on October 22, 2021. The one-day conference will match IASP’s theme “Back pain” and features live presentations from long-time Pain BC collaborators, including Joletta Belton, co-chair of the IASP’s Global Alliance of Partners for Pain Advocacy and a person with pain. A full list of presenters and topics can be found here.

We are also working to establish the BC Adaptive Mentorship Network (BCAMN), a new initiative funded by Health Canada’s Substance Use and Addictions Program. The aim is to connect primary care providers with experts in the areas of addictions, mental health and chronic pain who will provide professional mentorship. Together, mentors and mentees will build supportive professional learning networks to improve clinician capacity and patient care.

The networks are called ”adaptive” because they can be modified to suit the needs of mentees. They may be in-person or online, conducted one-on-one or in small groups, and may focus on discussing individual cases or tackling broader subjects.

These professional learning opportunities complement our established range of courses and resources for health professionals, and further our mission to improve the well-being of all people with pain. I encourage both health care providers and people with pain to join us for Interdisciplinary Pain Education Day, and to look out for further information about the launch of the BCAMN in future newsletters. By working together and learning from each other, we can close the knowledge gaps in our health system and ensure people with pain have the evidence-based care they need to live well.
Pain BC programs, resources and updates
The following programs and initiatives are funded, in whole or in part, by the Province of British Columbia: Coaching for Health, chronic pain management workshops for health care providers, Gentle Movement and Relaxation course, Live Plan Be, Making Sense of Pain, Pain BC's monthly webinars for health care providers, Pain Foundations, Pain Support and Wellness Groups, Pain Support Line and the Pain Waves podcast.
2021 Interdisciplinary Pain Education Day: We've got your back!
Virtual conference on October 22, 2021

We're excited to partner with Providence Health Care to offer an incredible day of learning about back pain from the comfort of your home or office! The Interdisciplinary Pain Education Day (IPED) annual conference features presentations from renowned health care providers, researchers and people with pain. This year's conference theme is focused on back pain and will feature:

  • Keynote presentations from patient advocate Joletta Belton and incoming Canadian Pain Society president Dr. John Pereira
  • Plenary presentations from Drs. Tasha Stanton, Owen Williamson, and Vishal Varshney
  • Seven concurrent workshops to learn about chronic back pain and practical skills health professionals can apply to their practice
  • Poster presentations highlighting projects and research on chronic low back pain
  • A patient panel


  • $50.00 for health care providers, health researchers and the general public until September 30, 2021
  • $10.00 for people living with pain and students (please note: free registration is available for people with pain who are unable to pay the $10 fee)

Registration is open and anyone with an interest is invited to attend!
Help us improve the Pain Support Line

Have you heard of our Pain Support Line but never used it? As part of our program-improvement process, we are looking for people with pain to take part in a 15-minute, virtual interview about the program. If you’re an adult (18+) BC resident with pain who is aware of the Pain Support Line (for example, you have seen an ad for the service or had it recommended by a friend or health provider) but have never contacted the Pain Support Line, we’re interested in hearing from you.

Participants will be paid a $25 honorarium.
Opportunities to join the Pain BC team

We're currently looking for two individuals to join our growing team. Please read below for the available positions. If you or anyone you know may be interested, we encourage you to apply or share.

Clinical Counsellor

We're looking for a full-time counsellor or social worker to lead the delivery of Pain BC's Coaching for Health program in a safe, consultative, trauma-informed, and evidence-based manner. This includes supporting our volunteer coaches by responding to ad-hoc requests, running debrief sessions, and monitoring the quality of coaching being provided.
Director, Support Services

We're looking for a permanent full-time Director of Support Services who can aid the growth and impact of all of Pain BC's Support Services programs, including the Pain Support Line, Coaching for Health and Pain Support and Wellness Groups programs.
Education Programs Coordinator

We're looking for a full-time Education Programs Coordinator to add value to education programs through activities that bring efficiency within the portfolio for projects and day-to-day activities, as well as support seamless execution at educational events sponsored by Pain BC or its partners.
Instructional Designer

We're looking for a full-time, temporary Instructional Designer who can help design Pain BC’s educational programs for health care providers, people living with pain, and our volunteer community.
Our supports for people with pain
Access our free pain self-management resources, including evidence-based articles, assessment tools, and an anonymous discussion forum.
Connect with Pain Support Line staff to talk about your pain, find information on community resources, learn about pain and self-management, and much more.
Join an online group and build a community of support while learning about pain, pain management and coping strategies.
Receive one-on-one phone support and mentorship from a coach who will help you learn about self-management, regaining function and improving your well-being.
Gentle Movement @ Home: Guided movement and relaxation for pain during COVID-19 (and beyond)

Gentle Movement @ Home online sessions provide guided movement and relaxation designed to help people with persistent pain learn to feel safe to move again. Topics include breath awareness and regulation, body tension regulation, and movement and relaxation techniques in both seated and standing positions.

The full collection of Gentle Movement @ Home videos are available to view for free via our YouTube channel.
Upcoming Pain BC and partner workshops, webinars and courses for health care providers
Pain Foundations for Allied Health Providers
Pain Foundations for Allied Health Providers is an online course designed for allied health care providers to improve their understanding of chronic pain and how to address the challenges of pain assessment and treatment. This practical, compact course allows learners to develop clinically relevant approaches to chronic pain management and develop a strong grounding in pain science to support further exploration. The course is free for health care providers in BC and offered at a modest cost for providers outside of BC.

Pain Foundations for Primary Care Providers
This practical, compact course allows physicians and nurse practitioners to develop clinically relevant approaches to chronic pain management, including non-pharmacological treatments and prescribing best practices. Learners will develop a strong grounding in pain science to support further exploration. The course is free for primary care providers in BC and offered at a modest cost for physicians and nurse practitioners outside of BC.

Gentle Movement and Relaxation course
This free, online course will equip physiotherapists and other therapeutic movement professionals with practical knowledge and teaching resources to lead their own movement and relaxation programs for people living with chronic pain.

The Gentle Movement and Relaxation course is currently available to BC health care providers only.

Other programs, opportunities and resources
Virtual education series on pediatric rheumatic diseases
A new series of evidence-based virtual education seminars

Cassie and Friends Society has launched a new virtual education seminar series to help families impacted by pediatric rheumatic diseases learn how to navigate life with a chronic condition. Working closely with Children's Hospitals and pediatric teams across Canada, they have created expert led sessions on topics such as Uveitis, physical activity and Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis. All of the past webinars are available as recordings, and the next live session is on October 28, 2021, with a theme of 'Transitioning from Pediatric to Adult Rheumatology Care.'
Hacking Pain: A Skunkworks Project
In-person event on November 26-27, 2021

Providence Health Care Research Institute is hosting its first-ever Hacking Pain event on November 26 and 27, 2021 to tackle some of the challenges faced by people with lived experience and the community when dealing with pain. People from a diverse range of backgrounds, including people with pain, caregivers and health care providers, are invited to attend and work together to come up with solutions for challenges related to pain. Register to participate or submit a pain-related problem by October 1, 2021.
Pain Society of Alberta World Pain Summit
October 15-17, 2021

The Pain Society of Alberta is hosting the World Pain Summit virtually on October 15-17, 2021. Registration costs range from $49.00 to $99.00 for health care providers, while people living with pain and medical students are invited to attend for free.
Research and engagement opportunities
Surgical Prehabilitation Study
New UBC study offers surgical patients a program to help prepare for surgery

CHANGEpain and UBC are launching a 20-week program to help physically prepare surgical patients in advance of their surgeries. Covered by MSP and funded by the UBC Department of Anesthesiology, the study will evaluate factors impacting patients' surgical help. To apply, ask your physician to fax your referral to 604-566-9102 and make sure they write 'UBC-Study' on the referral. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to Dr. Emmanuel Abreu at [email protected], or call 604-566-9101 ext. 109.
UBC Vision Lab study with wearable body sensors

The UBC Vision Lab is looking for people with chronic back pain or fibromyalgia to participate in a study that uses a wearable body sensor to look at how nervous system activity is related to emotional and physical well-being. Eligible participants must be at least 18 years of age, fluent in English and not have heart disease. Anyone interested can email Veronica Dudarev at [email protected].
Study: Immersive multimedia experiences for people with cancer-related pain

The UBC School of Nursing and SFU School of Interactive Arts + Technology are looking for people with cancer, who also experience chronic pain, to test the use of immersive multimedia experiences as a form of pain management. Research participants can complete the study from their homes and will be provided with an honorarium for their time. More information on the study, including eligibility, can be accessed here. To apply, please contact Crystal Sun, Project Manager at [email protected].
In the news
Guide to Chronic Pain in Students
It's the start of a new school year, and Solutions for Kids in Pain has created a free Guide to Chronic Pain in Students to help support educators of students living with pain.
The power of writing and sketching about chronic pain and illness
The author of this article shares how writing and sketching about chronic pain has helped to manage its emotional impact and provided a therapeutic outlet.
12 tips for managing chronic pain while working full time
The author of this article shares 12 tips for managing a full time job while living with chronic pain.
Do you gaslight your own chronic pain experience?
The author of this article shares how she sometimes minimizes and questions the validity of her own chronic pain, and offers advice on how to overcome self doubt.
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