This leaflet answers common questions about the pain management programme (PMP), run by the pain management service. If you would like further information, or have any worries, please do not hesitate to ask any member of the team.
What is the PMP?
The PMP is a programme run by pain specialist physiotherapists and psychologists, who aim to help people living with persistent pain to function well and move forward with their lives. It is about learning ways of living better with your pain.
Who is the PMP for?
- People who are struggling to do the things that matter to them because of persistent pain.
- People who are isolated or feel misunderstood in their experience of pain and would like support from others.
- People with pain who would like to become more confident in activities they can do and changes they can make to everyday life.
- People with persistent pain who would like to achieve a better quality of life.
How can I access the PMP?
To be assessed for one of our programmes, you first need to be referred by a member of the pain management team. We don’t take referrals directly from your GP because we want to be sure you have had all the necessary investigations, and possible
treatments, appropriate for you.
Once referred, you will be invited to attend one of our group PMP information sessions (either online or in person) which aims to tell you more about the programme, its aims for you and next steps.
Referral does not guarantee the PMP is the right approach for you. It also might not be the right time for you to take part in the PMP. Because of this, following your attendance of an information session, we will invite you for an individual assessment to ensure both.
How is the PMP run?
The group runs eight weekly sessions, each three hours long, including breaks. There is then one further session, 6-8 weeks after the weekly sessions conclude, giving you the chance to practice things discussed. We will have group discussions and invite you to take part in gentle movements and stretches throughout the sessions.
Each session builds upon the last, so it is essential that you attend all the sessions. Unfortunately, if you miss the first session of a programme you will not be able to join that group. Attendees may only defer a PMP once.
The sessions are experiential. This means that you’ll be asked to try things out during and outside of group sessions to learn new skills.
Most people feel anxious about attending a group, but it is a very supportive environment. Everyone is made to feel welcome, and you can choose to join in discussions or just listen quietly. At the end of the programme, most people report how much they enjoyed being in a group of people who understood their condition and experience.
After completing the PMP, you will be invited to attend our regular series of monthly online webinars.
We understand that you would like to get rid of your pain, but this programme is not a cure for persistent pain. It is important to understand that this programme is about helping you learn skills to make helpful changes for yourself.
What can the PMP help you achieve?
- Increased understanding about the nature of persistent pain.
- Practical and psychological ‘tools’ to help you manage the challenges of living with persistent pain.
- Increased confidence in managing activity, and how best to support yourself to do what matters to you.
- A support network – in addition to our webinars, sometimes group members continue to meet up after the end of the group and organise this independently.
Before attending, it can be useful to think about how the PMP could help you.
If the PMP were to make a difference for you, what might change for you day to day? Some examples our previous PMP attendees have identified have included:
- Gradually building up a social life
- Planning a trip/visit
- Being able to pick up a child/grandchild