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41st Edition of the Societal Impact of Pain (SIP) newsletter

Dr. Brona Fullen & Ms. Deirdre Ryan – European Pain Federation EFIC & Pain Alliance Europe (PAE), Belgium

Dear Reader,

We hope this newsletter finds you well.

In the final quarter of 2022, SIP has continued to work unceasingly to raise pain awareness at a European level and to promote pain and related policies.

In October, the annual SIP Stakeholder Forum (held virtually) was held which brought together several stakeholders with a shared interest in pain and related policies. It was an opportunity for SIP to take stock of its recent activities and to share with its peers its ambitions for the future. Find out more here.

The mental health of many has been challenged by the COVID-19 pandemic, and pain and mental health problems frequently go hand in hand. Mental health is high on both the European Union and SIP’s agenda, which makes it one of its priorities for 2023 along with access to treatment. The position is shared by other stakeholders, which will hopefully translate into joint actions in the new year.

Pain and digital health, as well as International Classification of Diseases 11th Revision (ICD-11), will remain SIP’s priorities for 2023. WHO’s revised ICD-11 came into effect in 2022, which included chronic pain as a condition in its own right, which in turn, will lead to improved evaluations and treatment decisions. Therefore, ICD-11 now needs to be implemented across Europe. This is a challenge that SIP enthusiastically welcomes. The recent SIP ICD-11 event, held late in November, brought together experts in the field, including WHO speakers, as well as patients.

Moreover, the 2022 SIP Road Map Monitor, was launched at said ICD-11 event. The report includes the status of national health frameworks of pain, pain as a quality indicator, pain research, pain in employment and pain education, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of different national systems. ICD-11 remains central to SIP's agenda, with a position paper launch planned for the new year.

November also saw the various national platforms come together around the fourth SIP National Platform Call of 2022. What emerged was the desire of national platforms to work together, moved by a common purpose. Therefore, we look forward to meeting them in February 2023 for the first SIP National Platform Call of the year.

It was also an eventful year for Pain Alliance Europe (PAE), which welcomed two new members to its Board at the last PAE General Assembly: Liisa Jutila from Suomen Kipu Ry and Lucian-Andrei Despa from Myeloma Euronet Romania.

SIP was also present at different European events: SIP’s Chair Patrice Forget represented SIP and spoke at a parallel session on working with chronic MSDs at the EU-OSHA Summit in Bilbao, Spain. PAE Association and Project Manager Emilia Kosińska represented SIP at the Polish Association for the Study of Pain Congress in Kraków, Poland. SIP’s Project Manager Angela Cano represented SIP at the Spanish Pain Society Congress in Valencia, Spain, and was part of a dedicated session entitled the Societal Impact of Pain (SIP) Platform.

PAE's engagement and collaboration continues in various research initiatives, such as OECD PaRIS Knee and Hip Replacement Project, INTEGRATE-Pain, European Brain Council (EBC) Value of Treatment (VoT), QSPainRelief, as well as new initiatives, such as EU SafePolyMed and BrainStimPain. Recently, PAE also participated as a member in the PAREA discussion on psychedelic-assisted therapies at the European Parliament. Visit PAE’s website to learn more about its activities.

Finally, we invite you to visit SIP’s website and social media channels in order to be kept up-to-date with all our activities.

As 2022 draws to end we wish to thank you for your continued support, engagement and collaboration. We wish you happy holidays and look forward to engaging with you in 2023.

Best wishes,

Dr. Brona Fullen, President of European Pain Federation EFIC &
Ms. Deirdre Ryan, President of Pain Alliance Europe (PAE)

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