Canadian Pain Task Force Meeting: March 12, 2020
Canadian Pain Task Force Meeting: March 12, 2020, 14:30-16:30 EST
- Provide updates on federal/Secretariat activities on pain
- Provide update on engagement activities to date
- Confirm direction regarding summarizing and sharing results of engagement activities
- Obtain input regarding outstanding engagement activities
- Develop schedule and agenda for meetings with the External Advisory Panel in April
- Obtain input to direct rapid evidence reviews
Task Force: Fiona Campbell, Maria Hudspith, Manon Choinière, Jacques Laliberté, Linda Wilhelm
Secretariat: Andrea Currie, Kristyn Franklin, Andrew Taylor, Megan Wyszynski
Regrets: Jaris Swidrovich, Hani El-Gabalawy, Melissa Anderson (on leave)
- The Secretariat welcomed everyone and provided an overview of the meeting objectives and agenda.
Affiliations and interests
- No significant updates to Task Force members' affiliations or interests.
- Secretariat noted they are seeking to temporarily backfill Melissa Anderson's position on the Task Force while she is on leave.
Health Canada Secretariat updates
- The Secretariat provided an update on operational planning for the fiscal year ahead.
- Health Canada announced funding for two pain-related projects in early March through the Substance Use and Addictions Program led by Alberta Health Services and the University of Saskatchewan.
- Work is being done with federal partners to integrate pain into federal initiatives that aim to prevent problematic substance use and to improve primary health care capacity to address mental illness and problematic substance use.
- The emerging COVID-19 pandemic may have an impact on the work of the Secretariat and Task Force, and engagement from government and non-government partners over the coming weeks and months.
- The Task Force will continue to work towards a June 2020 deadline for the second Task Force report. Appropriate adjustments will be made according to how COVID-19 evolves.
- The Task Force's online public consultation will be extended, given Canadians' current focus on personal health and safety. Members will identify an appropriate closing date at subsequent meetings.
- The Task Force will postpone or adjust in-person engagement activities to virtual platforms based on the preference of stakeholders.
- The planned in-person meeting of the Task Force and External Advisory Panel will be hosted through a series of virtual sessions.
Stakeholder engagement activities to date
- Task Force and Secretariat members discussed proceedings of recent regional stakeholder workshops in Quebec, Atlantic Canada, and Manitoba, including common themes presented across the country. The Secretariat will distribute the workshop summary reports to Task Force and External Advisory Panel members to inform discussions at the joint meetings in April.
- Task Force members discussed dissemination plans for the reports summarizing engagement sessions in Manitoba, which focused on Indigenous peoples in Manitoba and Saskatchewan.
- Task Force and Secretariat members provided updates on other recent consultations and targeted discussions with other stakeholder groups in Nova Scotia, Ontario, Newfoundland and Labrador, and British Columbia.
- The Secretariat provided an update on the preliminary findings of the online consultation.
- Task Force and Secretariat members discussed the approach for consolidating information from all stakeholder engagement activities into a comprehensive report.
Upcoming stakeholder engagement activities
- Task Force and Secretariat members discussed feasibility of planned stakeholder engagement activities in the territories and with Indigenous communities in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Task Force will explore alternatives with planning partners in these communities leaving the final decision to the stakeholders (e.g., switch to virtual discussions or postpone the in-person sessions to a later date).
- Task Force members agreed to explore a virtual workshop with pain advocacy organizations.
Joint meetings of the Task Force and External Advisory Panel
- Task Force members discussed and provided direction on the objectives and agenda for the joint virtual meetings of the Task Force and External Advisory Panel planned for April 8th and 9th, 2020.
- Task Force members agreed the focus of these meetings will be to obtain input from External Advisory Panel members on key inputs for the Task Force report outlining elements of an improved approach to understand, prevent, and manage pain in Canada including:
- What we heard from stakeholders across the country.
- Rapid evidence reviews.
- Analyses into the cost of pain in Canada.
- Additional consultations with External Advisory Panel members will occur via email and targeted discussions as needed following the joint meetings in April.
Input on rapid evidence reviews
- Task Force members discussed and provided input on query submission templates developed by the Drug Safety and Effectiveness Network in consultation with the Secretariat and additional subject matter experts.
- Task Force members also suggested additional areas for which reviews may be warranted in the future.
Next steps and follow-up items
- Secretariat to recommend a temporary appointment to the Task Force to backfill member currently on medical leave.
- Secretariat to complete and disseminate summaries of regional stakeholder workshops.
- Secretariat to explore with planning partners the feasibility and alternatives for engaging stakeholders in the Territories and Indigenous communities.
- Secretariat to revise April meeting agendas based on direction from the Task Force members and recirculate.
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