Pain BC Society

Pain BC Society

May 24, 2011 11:00 ET

Chronic Pain Shatters Lives

Pain BC's Inaugural Provincial Pain Summit to Foster Positive Change

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - May 24, 2011) - In Canada, one in five people suffer daily from chronic pain - it is a silent epidemic. In BC, we spend about 1.3 billion dollars on health care for chronic pain. The indirect costs are 6 times greater. Pain BC, a new non-profit organization, has been leading efforts to reduce the burden of pain on individuals, families, and in BC communities. Pain BC's inaugural Provincial Pain Summit will be held in Vancouver June 2-4.

Summit participants include people living with pain, physicians and other health care providers, government, regional health authorities and NGOs. They will share successes and innovations, and increase knowledge and capacity to support people with chronic pain. The Summit will result in concrete improvements for patients and health care providers.

Growing awareness of the human and financial costs has catalyzed an international movement to address the needs of people living with pain. Plans developed in Canada, Australia, the UK and the US share common elements: the redesign of health services, education for health care providers and promotion of self-management for patients. The Provincial Summit will build momentum towards the National Pain Summit scheduled for June 2012 in Ottawa.

Quick facts:

  • In Canada, 1 in 5 people deal with chronic pain; in BC, it's over 900,000 people
  • Chronic pain costs more than cancer, heart disease and HIV combined
  • Chronic pain can have a devastating impact on people's lives: job loss, poverty, addiction, depression and disability are some of the impacts
  • Chronic pain affects people across the lifespan, with the number increasing as the population ages
  • New approaches to care can reduce wait times and reduce costs
  • Veterinarians being trained in Canada get 2 to 5 times more pain management education than doctors and nurses in Canadian universities


Pain BC is a non-profit organization made up of patients, health care providers, and others with a passion for supporting people living with pain. The Society recently launched an ambitious three year Strategic Plan focusing on education and engagement for patients and health care providers, improving the health care system and translating research into practice.

Contact Information

  • To arrange an interview with a pain expert or person living
    with chronic pain, please contact: Maria Hudspith
    Executive Director, Pain BC