Painaustralia CEO, Carol Bennett speaks to Sky News about Aged Care
It has been another busy period for us as we move closer to the very late 2020–2021 Budget. Painaustralia has used the consultation process around this year’s budget to advocate for practical, achievable, yet significant initiatives that will help bridge some important gaps in current chronic pain management.
We released the results of our opioid survey in August, having received an overwhelming response from the chronic pain community. The results of the survey inform the initiatives we have recommended to Treasury and underline once again the serious pitfalls in implementing reforms that do not consider the perspectives of the very people they are designed to help.
The Annual Overdose report by Penington Australia has also once again highlighted the urgent need to address the significant harms that result from our current overreliance on medications, while also flagging that stopping access to pharmaceutical drugs without proper treatment will result in more deaths. Painaustralia continues to work with the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) to inform ongoing work around these reforms.
This month, we are also delighted to announce the establishment of Painaustralia’s Communication and Awareness Reference Group, chaired by Dr Chris Hayes. The group will provide input and guidance and inform the development of a one-stop information hub for chronic pain management in Australia.
Our newly established Parliamentary Friends of Pain Management group continues to advocate for our issues on the Hill, with our co-convener Senator Wendy Askew highlighting the complexities of chronic pain and its management in the Senate and David Smith MP raising the issue in the House of Representatives.
In what is a testament to these times, we have been participating in several stakeholder events such as International Pain Awareness Month and Pharmaus 2020, all of which have moved to new virtual platforms. I will also be participating in International Dementia Conference: Care In The Age Of Outrage hosted by Hammondcare later this month, as well as the upcoming Pain Society of Alberta Conference.
Through these testing and uncertain times, it is also important to prioritise your own mental health and wellbeing. We are grateful to Leanne Beagley, the CEO of Mental Health Australia, for sharing her insightful thoughts in this edition’s guest article.
I do hope you enjoy this, the 99th edition of our enews article.