European Positioning Statement: Chronic Pain fundamental for European health

International multi-stakeholder platform acknowledges chronic pain as disease in its own – European policy-makers challenged to respond

SIP 2012 Copenhagen Press ConferenceWatch the complete SIP 2012 Press Conference

Copenhagen, 31 May, 2012. On occasion of the 3rd international symposium on the “Societal Impact of Pain” (SIP 2012) in Copenhagen, Denmark on 29-31 May, a European multi-stakeholder expert group finalised their positioning paper demanding acknowledgement of chronic pain as disease in its own by EU governmental institutions and member state governments. During the Danish EU Presidency, more than 400 stakeholders from more than 30 countries came together to raise awareness on the societal impact of pain, exchange national best practices and foster European and national pain care policy projects. The symposium took place under the high patronage of the Italian Presidency of the Council of Ministers and the Italian Ministry of Health. The scientific aims of SIP 2012 were endorsed by more than 160 international organisations.

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Following the report “Reflection process on chronic diseases in the EU – the role of chronic pain”, which has been published during the symposium on 30th May, the overall impact of pain measured in terms of prevalence and cost is high; frequently chronic pain is prevalent in those patients who already have one or more than one chronic disease; in particular with the elderly population a strong link between the increase of age and the prevalence of chronic pain could be shown. The costs which arise from this high prevalent condition for our health care system are significant.

Anna Rosbach, Danish Member of the European Parliament, supports the findings of the report: “Chronic pain is a burden to millions of people in Europe. Because the pain is chronic it is often not considered a disease by society and health care systems. This must be changed. Chronic pain should no longer be given less attention and care than temporary pain.” N. Armstrong, J. Kleijnen: “Reflection process on chronic diseases in the EU – the role of chronic pain”, Kleijnen Systematic Review Ltd., 2012. 

Please view above Portuguese TV news report pubished on national television on the 11th of June (Portugese).

Please find here a BBC Radio Interview with Jim Wells (MLA) and Dr Pamela Bell on 1 May 2012. 

Here you can find SIP 2012 pictures / impressions. 

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  1. Societal Impact of Pain (SIP)
  2. European Positioning Statement: Chronic Pain fundamental for European health