Funding to reduce the burden of chronic pain

HALIFAX, April 5 /CNW/ - Patients suffering from chronic pain will now have a provincial network of trained primary care providers working together and sharing knowledge to improve their patient care and reduce chronic pain care wait times. Thanks to generous donors Purdue Pharma Canada and Pfizer Canada Inc., who each contributed $130,000 for a total of $260,000, the Nova Scotia Chronic Pain Collaborative Care Network (NSCPCCN) will continue to build upon and enhance an already established and successful framework.

Jody Ross knows all too well the importance of pain management and the effect it can have on a patient's life.

At just 29 years of age, Jody has spent roughly 11 of those years hospitalized for Crohn's disease, a condition she was diagnosed with at the young age of eight. Medication to manage her pain has been a constant battle. Through Jody's current physician's involvement with the Network, a new pain management drug was prescribed. "I remember the immediate positive difference in my pain level," recalls Jody. "I was so excited."

The Network, which began as a pilot program in July 2008 from a Department of Health initiative, brings together skilled pain / addiction practitioners (i.e. the mentor) and a group of primary care providers (i.e. the mentees) for the purpose of education and clinical support.

"Chronic pain affects nearly one in five Nova Scotians. The Nova Scotia Chronic Pain Collaborative Care Network is helping patients receive immediate treatment from their primary care provider in their practice setting," explains Dr. Peter MacDougall, physician at Capital Health and director of the NSCPCCN. "Some patients are now able to be seen by their family physician, receive treatment and not need to visit the pain management centre at the QEII. Other patients still need the referral, but now they are receiving immediate care and attention before they visit the centre."

This approach to care is reducing chronic pain care wait lists and overall costs to our health system. With such an impressive, successful approach to health care delivery, both Pfizer Canada Inc. and Purdue Pharma Canada recognized the value of the Network and jumped at the chance to support it. Their collective funds will provide for the continued expansion of the Network across the province and into the Maritimes, as well as for training workshops and staffing resources.

"Purdue is pleased to continue working in partnership with educational institutions and hospital foundations in the province to support programs such as the Nova Scotia Chronic Pain Collaborative Care Network which improves patient care, as well as encourages the safe and appropriate use of medicines" said Dr. Cornelia Hentzsch, president, Purdue Pharma Canada.

Denis Laflamme, director, Public Affairs, Pfizer Canada Inc. expressed that "Pfizer is proud to support the Network which will improve health care providers' access to education and peer learning. This unique Nova Scotia pain network will also improve patient choices for community care and treatments.  Community based chronic pain management is essential to keep Nova Scotians living with pain active in their workplaces, family lives and communities."

Jody is grateful that the Network was there to support her physician and ultimately, change her life. "After three months of taking the new recommended drug, on my 29th birthday, I was discharged from the hospital after being in for the better part of three years," says Jody. "My son jumped with joy and shed many tears when he learned that I would finally be able to come home and spend a night with him. Pain management will always be a big part of my life, but for now, my focus is enjoying life at home and spending as much time with my son as possible."

Building on its successful pilot project, NSCPCCN has launched a website and will continue to expand the Network. Groups within the Network are arranged by geography as much as possible. "It is all about providing the best care, at the best time, in the best place," says MacDougall.

About Purdue Pharma Canada
A research-based pharmaceutical company in Pickering, Ontario, Purdue Pharma Canada ( is committed to improving patient health and well-being, by developing innovative medicines and supporting quality education for the safe use of our products. Purdue Canada is a recognized leader in research and development of products for the treatment of pain. Our portfolio also includes products for the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), respiratory disease, gastrointestinal disorders and infection control.  As a corporate citizen, Purdue has developed a range of alliances and partnerships with professional associations, educational and research institutions to help improve patient health and well-being.

About Pfizer Canada Inc.
Pfizer Canada Inc. is the Canadian operation of Pfizer Inc., the world's leading biopharmaceutical company. The company is one of the largest contributors to health research in Canada. Our diversified health care portfolio includes biologic and small molecule medicines and vaccines for humans and animals, and many of the world's best-known consumer products.  Every day, Pfizer Canada employees work to advance wellness, prevention, treatments and cures that challenge the most feared diseases of our time.  We apply science and our global resources to improve the health and well-being of Canadians at every stage of life. Our commitment is reflected in everything Pfizer does, from our disease awareness initiatives to our community partnerships, to our belief that it takes more than medication to be truly healthy. To learn more about Pfizer's More than Medication philosophy and programs, visit To learn more about Pfizer Canada, visit

About the QEII Foundation
The QEII Foundation is a non-profit, charitable organization established to strengthen health care at the QEII Health Sciences Centre. The Foundation's mission is leading the spirit of philanthropy to enrich health care for Atlantic Canadians and in the process helps to support the QEII's quest to become a world-leading haven for health, healing and learning. The QEII Foundation raises funds to support excellence in patient care through the purchase of state-of-the-art patient technology, promotion of professional education, advancement of medical research, and involvement with community-based disease prevention initiatives. The QEII Foundation receives over 41,000 gifts each year from individuals, corporations, organizations and community groups. The Foundation consults with the health sciences centre administration annually to determine the areas of greatest need within the QEII.


For further information:

please contact:

Tanya MacLean, communications officer, QEII Foundation
Tel: (902) 473-4696; Email:

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