I am delighted to present this Implementation Plan for the Scottish Government's Framework for Chronic Pain Service Delivery. I know from meeting people living with chronic pain just how challenging everyday life with this condition can be, and the hidden impact it can have on both physical health and mental wellbeing.
That is why the Scottish Government is determined to take urgent action to address the priorities people with chronic pain have told us matter most to them. From ensuring the impact of their condition is recognised and that they are treated with respect and compassion, to investing in our staff, this Plan sets out actions which will lead to meaningful improvement for people with chronic pain.
Through the development of the Framework and Implementation Plan we have already started to make good progress putting in place the networks and infrastructure that will be required to help us deliver our vision. This includes bringing together our clinical community, service planners and third-sector partners from across Scotland to share their knowledge to help us identify new opportunities to improve coordination and quality of care and services for people with chronic pain.
We are also taking action so people with chronic pain whose voices are less frequently heard have greater opportunity to share their needs and contribute their ideas. This will help us reduce the barriers and inequity some people face when seeking support for chronic pain.
We want to ensure that we learn from the experience of the chronic pain community of the COVID-19 pandemic and the impact it had on services. We will do this by building on the skills and knowledge our staff and services have gained from new ways of working. This will involve identifying new and innovative models of care, increased sharing of skills and resources, and embracing emerging research, data and technologies to develop more effective and sustainable services for people with chronic pain.
We have carried out comprehensive engagement on our proposals, and this has demonstrated widespread support for our ambitions. I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has been involved in sharing their experience and ideas in helping to inform the Framework and this Implementation Plan. Alongside the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care, I will continue to engage and invite constructive challenge from all those who will join us on this improvement journey. We are determined to make a difference, and I look forward to sharing and celebrating our progress to improve care, services and quality of life for people with chronic pain in Scotland.
Maree Todd MSP
Minister for Public Health, Women's Health and Sport
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