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News&Review No.3

10 Professor Michael Schäfer PAIN EDUCATION – A MODULAR LEARNING APPROACH Educating healthcare professionals on the adequate use of analgesics based on underlying pain mecha- nisms have been identified as a cru- cial part of CHANGE PAIN. Evidence suggests that medical training of pain management at both under- graduate and postgraduate level is insufficient1. An electronic poll car- ried out with participants at the CHANGE PAIN Expert Summit con- firmed these findings with more than half having received no teach- ing on pain management during their university education, while just over a third had received less than 10 hours education (Figure 4). To address these problems the CHANGE PAIN expert group has devised a new educational pro- gramme called PAIN EDUCATION. It comprises an online learning course which can be adapted to different individual and national requirements. Part of the course consists of three electronic mod- ules on Continuing Medical Educa- tion (eCME) each of which takes one hour to complete and earns one European CME credit. Three mod- ules are now available: COMMENTARY Professor Michael Schäfer, Charité University, Berlin, Germany A major point identified at the CHANGE PAIN Expert Summit was the need to place a greater emphasis on the teaching of pain management at both undergraduate and postgraduate level in order to strengthen the healthcare professional’s expertise in pain and thus support better out- comes in pain management. PAIN EDUCATION is contributing by providing healthcare professionals with up-to-date scientific data on chronic pain. It offers a range of complementary learning programmes which physicians are able to tailor to suit their individual requirements. Module 1 deals with pain assess- ment and communication between physician and patient. The multi- dimensional assessment of chronic pain is emphasized together with the importance of individual patient- centred treatment goals. Module 2 looks at the multimodal management of chronic pain. The benefits and side effects of different drugs are discussed including use of other therapies such as physio- therapy, psychological treatment and patient education. Module 3 includes an in-depth re- view of mechanism-orientated phar- macological treatment of chronic pain and how to identify causative mech- anisms and emphasizing the impor- tance of initiating early treatment. The international eCME modules are now available on the website and national modules will be accessible via local websites. References 1. Survey of undergraduate pain curricula for healthcare professionals in the United Kingdom: A Short Report.The Pain Education Special Inter- est Group of the British Pain Society.The British Pain Society, London, UK, 2009. http://www. report_survey.pdf (accessed 22nd January 2010). RESULTS OF DIGITAL VOTING QUESTION AT EXPERT SUMMIT Remembering your university education – how many hours of teaching on pain management did you have? n=104 1 = None 2 = < 10 hours 3 = < 50 hours 4 = > 50 hours 51 % 36.5 % 6.7 % 5.8 % Figure 4