The community pain pathway for greater Nottingham has now been running for a year, starting on the 17th July 2017. The pathway operates across Nottingham North and East, Nottingham West and Rushcliffe CCGs.
The pathway has a dedicated multidisciplinary team of specialist clinicians that help patients with spinal and other persistent pain conditions as well as patients with chronic fatigue syndrome to get the right diagnosis and treatment, manage their symptoms better and improve their quality of life. Patients have open appointments, given that chronic pain is a long term condition. Patients are seldom discharged and can return to the service as required even if they are discharged via a telephone call.
The pain pathway is underpinned by a dedicated administration team, which network with other healthcare colleagues, including the GP practices, pharmacists and physiotherapists to provide care closer to home. The pathway receives referrals from GPs, secondary and community care. The role of GP practices is key in this all-encompassing service.
The results have been truly fantastic. The number of patients receiving pain injections has halved over the past year and outpatient attendances in secondary care have all but disappeared. Instead, patients receive a bespoke service, tailored to their specific needs, with care including wellbeing advice for self care, exercise, mindfulness and physiotherapy. Injections are still available and provided as required, based on clinical assessment of need.
These services are provided from a large number of community venues across the 3 CCGs.
Looking ahead, the service aims to continue to develop and expand the biopsychosocial and self care emphasis of the service. A dedicated website is currently being developed, enabling patients to have 2-way communication with both PICS clinicians and fellow patients. As well as providing answers to individual questions, the website will provide information on how to manage pain, about the pain service and provide GP practice information.For more details please call 0300 830000.
Some of the pain pathway team celebrating at the 1st birthday party.