An Action Plan for Pain in Canada

Approximately one in five Canadians live with chronic pain. Chronic pain has a significant impact on an individual’s physical and mental health, often preventing them from managing everyday activities.

The World Health Organization defines pain as “an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage”.  The experience of pain is a unique and personal experience that can vary widely from person to person.

Chronic Pain defined as pain that continues for longer than three months. Sometimes pain can continue:
• with no known cause
• after an injury has healed
• after a condition has been treated

While chronic pain is often invisible, it is now recognized it as a disease in and of itself, and not just a symptom of something else.

Many injured workers struggle with chronic pain, and with the challenges related to stigma and access to health services.

Health Canada established the Canadian Pain Task Force which was mandated to provide advice to Health Canada regarding evidence and best practices for the prevention and management of chronic pain.

The Task Force has now delivered three reports to Health Canada. The third and final report – An Action Plan for Pain in Canada – was submitted to Health Canada in March 2021.

If you or anyone you know lives with Chronic Pain, you will be interested in the reports and resources available on the Task Force’s website.