Pain Management Task Force minutes: November 2022

Minutes for the meeting of the group on 23 November 2022

Attendees and apologies

Lynne Nicol, Deputy Director (Chair), Scottish Government
Nicci Motiang, Unit Head (deputy chair), Scottish Government
James O'Malley, Senior Policy Manager, Scottish Government
Sharon Robertson,  Policy Manager, Scottish Government
Nicola Rhind, National Clinical Lead
Helen Moores-Poole, Lead AHP Primary Care, Scottish Government
Martin Dunbar, Third Sector Network Lead
Lynn Railston, Public Health Scotland
Deborah Steven, Pharmacy Network Lead
Aline Williams, Service Manager Network Lead
Nina Cockton, Psychology Network Lead

Tracy Robertson
Liam Gray
Jacquelyn Watson
Stephen Martin
Lois Lobban
Rory Mackenzie

Items and actions

Welcome and apologies

The Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting and asked them to give a brief introduction to the other attendees. The Network Leads were welcomed to the meeting.

Apologies were noted as above.

Approval of previous minutes and matters arising 

No changes were highlighted for the draft minutes and they were approved.

Implementation Progress

Written updates were provided to the Task force prior to the meeting. Verbal updates were given to the task force on the following. 

Government Led Debate - the debate held on 6 November was well attended with a lot of sharing of both personal and local experiences. The read out from the debate can be found at Scottish Government - Official Report - Chronic Pain Services.

Topics raised included - ongoing monitoring of the implementation plan; waiting times for interventions, return appointments; access and different pathways and variation in support; issues in relation to staffing. A series of opportunities and suggestions were made at the debate.

The task force discussed the perception of self management and a public health campaign.

Action 5 - First Meeting of the Third Section Network has been scheduled for 1st December. The draft terms of reference will be reviewed and work towards drafting of a workplan will begin.  

Action 8 - Plan has been agreed to ensure the correct membership of the Service Managers Network is place. Meeting on 28 November will look at agreeing the Terms of Reference.

Action 10 - The Remote Healthcare Pathway pilot in NHS Highland has been ongoing since October. This work is based on the Core Minimum Dataset and early feedback has been that the digital collation is easier to use and navigate than the previous paper questionnaire. There has been some interest from other Boards to trial in their local areas.  Connect Health report can be shared when clinician feedback received. 

Action 13 - Work is underway in NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde to look at using specialist interventions in a safe, sustainable way. Review of evidence base has been carried out, guidance produced on patient suitability and patient-facing materials have been produced. Looking to get a broader view via the Chronic Pain Medics Network. 

It was suggested that a position paper should be completed to provide a national consensus on this issue. It was also suggested the Getting It Right For Everyone (GIRFE) approach should be reviewed, including a review of the Pathfinder projects proposed by Health Boards and Health and Social Care Partnerships.

Scottish Health Technology Group (SHTG) review and SIGN update is also being considered to support this work. 

Action 11 - We have been advised that the SIGN Board meeting was cancelled. Submission has been made and are waiting on preliminary decision.

Action 16 - Public Health Scotland (PHS) have carried out work to engage with all Boards to looking at the quality of data and service configuration. The policy team will review the recommendations from PHS and develop a joint workplan on how to implement them.

Stakeholder Involvement

Health Improvement Scotland (HIS) and Pain Panel update - The draft gathering views report has been received from HIS. The final report will be shared when received.  The final report from the Pain Management Panel has been published and a link had been shared prior to the meeting.

Network Leads Development Day - All attendees felt it was a useful day and allowed them to meet and discuss expectations of them. Also discussed were leadership skills, challenges and opportunities.


Newsletter will be quarterly, and it is felt that it would be useful to time it around the waiting times data is published. The first newsletter is intended for December 2022. 

Update of the SG website – The pain management page will be updated to reflect the new governance arrangements and Implementation Plan Actions. 

Supported self management examples – Health Board Annual Delivery Plans contain some examples of projects which could be highlighted in the newsletter. 

Finance and commissioning 

Scottish National Residential Pain Management Programme (SNRPMP) and Public Health Scotland funding has been agreed and allocated. The task force were asked to note that the costs for SNRPMP will increase when the residential component restarts. 
Preparatory work on the 2023/24 programme budgets will start in December any costs which may arise in the next year must be highlighted to the policy team.

Any other competent business

The call for expressions of interest for the AHP Professional Advisor for Rehabilitation post has been extended to 30 November. Grateful if could be brought to attention of all appropriate networks.

The new Framework Implementation Lead with be in post from 16 January 2023. 

Date of next meeting 

The date of the next meeting was confirmed as Wednesday 1 February 2023, at 10.30 am via MS Teams. 

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