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Airing Pain 77: Realising the Painful Truth

Putting patients first, and teenage life with pain

This edition is funded by a grant from the Pain Alliance of Northern Ireland.

How can healthcare systems adapt to meet the needs of people in pain? Airing Pain returns to Northern Ireland to find out how the findings of the Painful Truth report into chronic pain will be put into practice.

The Painful Truth had a big impact on decision makers – chronic pain is now recognised as a condition in its own right, healthcare professionals receive pain education and people in pain have a bigger voice in developing their services – but with resources tight and pressure on services, putting the report’s recommendations into practice won’t be easy.

We hear some of the stories behind the statistics. Zahra and Aimee, teenagers living with pain, talk about how they cope with the ‘invisible’ illness of pain and rising above the challenges they face in their social lives and school work. Margaret Peacock and Carrie describe their difficulties in getting help from the medical profession.

Issues covered in this programme include: Pain as a condition in its own right, policy, raising awareness, fibromyalgia, GP, society, misconceptions, funding of health services, patient voice, patient experience, waiting time, arthritis, isolation, befriending, volunteering, tendonitis and young people.


  • Pamela Bell, Chair of the Pain Alliance of Northern Ireland
  • Professor Maureen Edmondson, Chair of the Patient and Client Council in Northern Ireland
  • Louise Skelly, Head of Operations at the Patient and Client Council in Northern Ireland
  • Carrie
  • Meave McLaughlin, Member of the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Ireland Health Committee
  • Margaret Peacock, Chair of Fibromyalgia Support Northern Ireland
  • Dr Anne Kilgallen, Deputy Chief Medical Officer, DHSSPS, Northern Ireland
  • Tricia Bowers, Training Manager, Arthritis Care Northern Ireland
  • Zahra Baz
  • Aimee Gallagher
  • Jillian
  • Christine McMaster, Pain Forum Northern Ireland.
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I adore it when people come together and share
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