The Societal Impact of Pain (SIP) 2010

Bringing together stakeholder from all over Europe

In May 2010, a high profile group of almost 200 health specialists and representatives from Europe’s highest ranking health authorities gathered in Brussels to discuss the "Societal Impact of Pain" (SIP). The objectives of the symposium were to discuss the key challenges, goals, and policy instruments with budget holders, strategic decision makers and representatives of stakeholder organisations to improve pain care in Europe.

The symposium saw a lively debate on interesting projects initiated in many countries to investigate the economic factors related to the burden of pain both on patients and the society and suggested future innovations. Unfortunately, the knowledge gained and management instruments developed locally developed are still too rarely shared amongst healthcare authorities and stakeholders throughout Europe. There was a broad consensus that treated pain patients cost national governments, economies and societies much less than untreated patients do.

With the SIP 2010 symposium, change has begun. Awareness was raised on the fact that the Societal Impact of Pain represents a huge social burden due to the high pain-related costs that governments are constantly called to deal with, including absenteeism, disability allowances, assisted care, informal and family care, amongst others. In this respect, much more still needs to be done.

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