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November 2022 Pain BC Newsletter
Highlights from National Pain Awareness Week
This year’s National Pain Awareness Week (NPAW) was an exceptional week of collaboration, community, awareness and investment in pain.

The week kicked off on November 7, with the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health, announcing $4.5 million in federal funding for the expansion of Pain Canada to enhance national collaboration, scale up best practices and expand resources available for people living with chronic pain. She also announced a further $500,000 to fund Pain BC’s work to improve access to pain care and services for people in BC’s LGBTQ2S communities, as well as for Chinese, Punjabi and Arabic speaking communities.

During NPAW, Pain Canada also hosted Putting the Pieces Together, its first-ever virtual conference for and by people living with pain. The event showcased a diverse range of speakers and events and drew more than 500 registrants.

“I learned that online forums like this are very important to help me feel not so alone, isolated, disabled," one conference attendee shared. “I learned that there can be laughter about our pain and life. I learned that most people with lived pain have to fight for appropriate care and support. I’m not alone or just a difficult patient.”

Stay tuned to our future newsletters and social media channels to find out how you can watch recordings of the conference presentations for free.

This year also marked our most successful NPAW social media campaign to date. Coordinated by Pain Canada, the campaign provides tools and resources to raise awareness of chronic pain and to call for the implementation of the recommendations from Health Canada’s Action Plan for Pain in Canada.

This year’s campaign engaged nearly 170 health, social service, research and education organizations and hundreds of people with pain, reaching more than 1.4 million individuals and generating 4.2 million impressions on social media.

The feelings of hope, awareness and community generated during National Pain Awareness Week remain with us, and we will carry them into the new year and beyond.
Pain BC programs, resources and updates
Are you interested in a Pain Support and Wellness Group for young adults (18-35)?
Take our survey

Are you a young person with pain who lives in BC? Would you attend a youth-focused Pain Support and Wellness Group? Please take a moment to complete our short, anonymous survey to help us determine the level of interest in Pain BC offering this option in our Pain Support and Wellness Group program.
People stacking their hands together to show teamwork
Apply to become a Coaching for Health volunteer
Online training begins on January 26, 2023

Are you interested in volunteering with Pain BC’s Coaching for Health program? We are currently seeking volunteers to participate in our upcoming training session. The training will be approximately 40 hours long, with a mix of self-guided online training and facilitated (live) online training sessions. The full training schedule is available here.

If you are interested and able to commit to the training schedule, please complete our application form. Only candidates selected for an interview will be contacted. If you have any questions, please contact us at
Recording available: Ask a pharmacist webinar
Free webinar now online

The recording of our November educational webinar and Q&A with Dr. Karen Ng, an Opioid Stewardship Clinical Pharmacy Specialist, is now online. She shares information on medication relevant to people with pain and answers medication-related questions.
Our supports for people with pain
LivePlanBe+ logo
Knowledge is power. Learn to manage pain and improve well-being though our library of evidence-based articles on LivePlanBe or start a customized program on LivePlanBe+.
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

Gentle Movement @ Home free online videos 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.

Pain BC relies on the generosity of our donors to deliver our programs and services. We gratefully acknowledge that many of our programs and services receive partial financial support from the Province of British Columbia, including Coaching for Health, the Pain Support Line, Pain Support and Wellness Groups, our chronic pain management workshops for health care providers, Gentle Movement and Relaxation course, LivePlanBe, Making Sense of Pain, Pain Foundations, and the Pain Waves podcast.
Other programs, opportunities and resources
Person with Lived Experience of Pain Leadership Award
Application deadline: January 13, 2023

The Person with Lived Experience of Pain Leadership Award recognizes outstanding contributions by people with lived experience to pain research, education, and/or community building, in Canada. The selection will be made by a committee formed by the Canadian Pain Society (CPS). Letters of nomination must be signed by one CPS Regular Member and a representative of a community organization and should include a description of the nominee, their contributions and impact on pain research, education, and/or community-building, and any relevant past achievements. The recipient will be notified by February 1, 2023.
Pacific Pain Forum logo
Save the date: Pacific Pain Forum
In-person in Vancouver with virtual option: April 28, 2023

The Pacific Pain Forum is a full-day hybrid pain conference presented by Providence Health Care. The event will include leading voices in the international pain community who will talk about the latest advances in clinical care, research and innovations in pain medicine. The event is free for people with lived experience who join online.
National hidden disability symbol
Hidden disabilities include all non-evident, undetectable and invisible disabilities

Hidden disabilities are not readily apparent to others. To recognize the International Day of Persons with Disabilities on December 3, 2022, advocates are calling for sending messages to Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, to adopt a nationally recognized hidden disability symbol in Canada. The goal of the symbol is to act as a self-advocacy tool as well as a social, cultural and systemic transformation tool.
Research and engagement opportunities
Power Over Pain portal for youth logo
Study: Power Over Pain portal for youth

The Power Over Pain portal for youth is an online portal designed to help young people manage their pain. Researchers are seeking participants aged 12-18 who have been experiencing pain for three months or longer. Participation will involve answering online questionnaires, using the Power Over Pain portal for eight weeks, and optionally completing a feedback interview. All participants will receive volunteer hours and gift card compensation. To sign up, email
Study: Identity construction in former athletes living with chronic pain

Researchers at the University of British Columbia are interested in exploring experiences and perspectives of retired athletes living with persistent pain. They are seeking to conduct interviews with retired athletes who have played at an elite level in a sport (university varsity, semi-professional, or higher) and retired (left their highest level of performance) between one and five years ago. The total time commitment for the study is about three hours. The principal investigator for this study is Dr. Erica Bennett. Kassi Welch is a second-year graduate student working under the supervision of Dr. Bennett. To participate, email Kassi at
Study: The mind-body connection and its role in chronic pain in youth

Researchers at BC Children’s Hospital want to explore narratives of youth affected by chronic pain and their parents to understand whether there are any unique ways that those affected by pain recognize the mind-body connection and its role in symptoms. Through learning more about facilitators and barriers to mental health care access for these families, they hope to improve access to current available treatments. You are eligible to participate if you are a youth (aged 12-18) experiencing chronic pain or a caregiver of youth experiencing chronic pain. Participation involves taking part in focus groups with other youth experiencing chronic pain, and their parents. To participate, email
CircaPain logo
Study: Pain throughout the day

If you live with pain, does it change throughout the day? The CircaPain research team is studying how time of day impacts pain and wants to hear about your experience. This study is open to all adults who have had persistent pain for more than three months. Learn more and take the survey on CircaPain's website:
In the news
Health care providers 'woefully ill-prepared' to treat chronic pain, says advocate
On November 7, 2022, Health Canada announced they are investing $5 million towards our work to enhance support for people living with chronic pain and to expand the Pain Canada network to further address the impact of pain in Canada.
What it's like to be diagnosed with arthritis at age 13
Natasha Trehan shares how she came to understand her illness, rely on her friends for support and why she decided to create an online community of youth with rheumatic illnesses through her podcast platform: Take a Pain Check.
Five ways I'm planning to handle the holidays differently this year with chronic illness
The author of this article, who lives with myalgic encephalomyelitis / chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), shares five ways she’s planning to navigate the holiday season to make it easier to manage.
BC launching new payment model for family doctors in 2023
The new model will take into account how much time a doctor spends with a patient, the complexity of their needs, the number of patients a doctor sees daily, their administrative costs and the total number of patients a doctor supports through their office.
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