We are living in a world of content overload. With technology advances and people’s increasing reliance on social media for news and updates, quality information that is free from vested interests can fall by the wayside.
This is why the task of creating a ‘one stop shop’ for best practice pain management is not a task we take lightly. Painaustralia has established a Communications and Awareness Reference Group (CARG) to assist us to build a comprehensive and current resource hub of information about chronic pain. We have pulled together a small group of the best and most informed experts across the sector for the task of developing our website into a gateway for best practice, evidence-based pain education and information in Australia.
This week marked the first meeting for the CARG. We outlined our ambitions for the project, as well as identifying some challenges. Overall, the group is excited to develop a resource that we hope will be well utilised and valued throughout the sector.
We know that awareness of pain and treatment options is low in the community. We often hear reports of people living with pain experiencing stigma and misunderstanding of their condition, not only within the community but within their workplace and even by some health practitioners. Through developing this information resource, we aim to increase understanding of what pain is, and what best practice pain treatments can and should look like. This could act as a conduit for health professionals and consumers to build a shared understanding and better collaboration for pain management. It also has a broader role in informing carers, journalists and the community who visit the site for whatever purpose to be informed by the best available evidence.
By providing quality information about pain management, consumers can be active participants in their remedial journey and have greater confidence to seek the best treatment to manage their chronic pain. We want to enable people with chronic pain to be equal and informed partners in their healthcare.
Providing a trusted space for evidence-based information will hopefully empower consumers to lead their own treatment pathway and build on the knowledge and understanding of health professionals so they have the tools they need to prevent future pain issues and coordinate effective pain management plans. Combining and refining the comprehensive information that exists in various places online will simplify the process for anyone wanting to learn more about pain. This is an opportunity for the most trusted, innovative and informed organisations and models of care in best practice pain management to be accessible at the click of a link.
Our goal is to be the first point of call for consumers, carers, health practitioners and anyone looking for quality information about pain and pain management. Easy access to the right information, that is quality assured and free from commercial interests, is vital for anyone looking to research and learn about pain, particularly if they are seeking advice on managing their pain.
Painaustralia is well positioned to be the leading hub of information as a respected voice for the sector and the ‘go to’ body for policy, advocacy and information on national pain issues. We have recently rolled out several multi-faceted consumer education and awareness campaigns, many in partnership with other health sector organisations including the Real Relief website, private health insurance reforms and the take-home naloxone campaign.
We look forward to building this information hub over the coming months with you to share it with everyone. I think we can all agree that accurate, unbiased information about pain and its management has never been so important to so many.