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Airing Pain 20: The Social Costs of Pain

The societal and economic impact of pain and driving pain up the agenda

This programme was funded by an educational grant from Grünenthal.

Pain has a huge impact not just on individuals but also on society, healthcare systems and the economy. Airing Pain takes a look at how the International Association for the Study of Pain’s Declaration of Montréal and EFIC (the European Federation of International Association for the Study of Pain Chapters) are working to drive pain up the political agenda. We interview experts in healthcare policy and chronic pain treatment as well as patient groups at EFIC’s European Societal Impact of Pain symposium for their views on how the way society and the medical profession respond to pain could be improved.

Issues covered in this programme include: Society, economic impact, policy, unemployment, breakdown of relationships, raising awareness, education, right to healthcare, everyday life, stigma, waiting times, patient voice, scientific progress and medical research.


  • Dr Beverly Collett, Consultant Pain Medicine, University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust
  • Dr Brian McGuire, Senior Lecturer in Clinical Psychology, National University of Ireland, Galway
  • Gina Plunkett, Chairperson, Chronic Pain Ireland
  • Professor Dr Michael Zenz, President, DGSS, Dept of Anaesthesiology, Intensive Care and Pain Therapy. Ruhr-University, Bochum.
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