BC ECHO for Chronic Pain

Project ECHO: People working on laptopsBeginning spring 2019, Pain BC will launch a 3-year pilot project of ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) for Pain.

What is the BC ECHO for Chronic Pain?

Based on the University of New Mexico model, the BC ECHO for Chronic Pain is a free virtual learning community comprised of specialists and community health care providers who use instructive and case-based learning to gain improved competence in providing care for complex pain cases. Through our ECHO, health care providers can get the help and support they need to provide immediate care to patients with complex pain in underserved areas, such as rural and remote communities.

    How ECHO benefits patients

    Providers who participate in our ECHO will directly contribute to improved health outcomes for patients with complex pain.

    Providers will be able to better support their patients by providing them with improved access to and consistency in pain care in their own communities, rather than immediately referring them on to a specialist or pain clinic. As a result, there will be a decreased need for patients in rural communities to travel to urban centres to access health care, and patients will also benefit from avoiding long wait lists for specialized clinics. 

    Why should I sign up?

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    It's free

     Our ECHO is fully funded by the Shared Care Committee (SCC), one of the Joint Collaborative Committees (JCC) of Doctors of BC and the BC Government.

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    It's virtual

    All you need is a computer and a webcam or a smartphone.

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    It's fun

    Connect with a growing community of primary and allied health care providers (including physicians, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, psychologists and more) across the province to build a community of practice where everyone learns together with a shared purpose.

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    Earn CME credits

    CME accreditation for physicians is currently pending for our ECHO.

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    It works for you and our health care system

    Our ECHO provides a significant opportunity for practitioners to improve their competence in chronic pain care by gaining help with complex cases, receiving support and mentorship, and helping to reduce disparities in the quality of care for rural and underserved areas.

      What past participants are saying

      In a similar ECHO for Pain in Ontario, which launched in 2014, more than 200 health care providers participated in 105 ECHO sessions, during which 139 new cases were discussed. Participants were asked to fill out post-evaluation survey, and here's what they had to say:

      • 97% of participants stated that “Involvement in Project ECHO was a worthwhile experience” for them
      • 94% of participants stated that they would recommend involvement in Project ECHO to their colleagues

      • 92% believed that the quality of the care they provide their patients has improved considerably as a result of their involvement in Project ECHO

      Building a learning community

      The BC ECHO for Chronic Pain fits into Pain BC’s laddered strategy for building chronic pain capacity among health care providers in BC:

      • The base of the strategy is Pain Foundations, an online, self-paced course for all health care providers, regardless of discipline.
      • The second tier of the strategy is providing discipline-specific training for health care providers. This is delivered in a number of ways, including Pain BC’s clinical workshops for allied health providers, the Practice Support Program (PSP) for primary care physicians, and other discipline-specific CME opportunities.
      • ECHO will provide a third tier of ongoing support and mentorship to health care providers as they build their capacity to assess and treat people living with complex and chronic pain.

      How ECHO works

      Our ECHO sessions will be comprised of monthly 2-hour sessions. Each session will consist of a 20-30 minute instructive presentation from specialists on participant-identified topics, followed by 2 case presentations, which can be submitted by any participating health care provider. Each session will wrap up with resources and recommendations. Sessions will be recorded and made available to all registered participants.

      Cycle 1

      Our ECHO will start on April 30, 2019. Topics and dates for upcoming sessions include:

      • April 30, 2019: Practical strategies you can use to treat your patient with low back pain
      • May 21, 2019: Opioid tapering and rationalization
      • June 18, 2019: How to build movement into your patient’s life

      Find out more

      If you'd like to find out more about our ECHO, we're holding a virtual informational session on March 19, 2019 from 12:00-1:00pm PST. Sign up to attend the informational session.

      Join our ECHO

      If you're a BC health care provider and would like to join our free virtual learning community, you can apply for free by filling out the form below.

      For questions about the BC ECHO for Chronic Pain, please contact education@painbc.ca.

      Funding for this project was provided by the Shared Care Committee (SCC), one of the Joint Collaborative Committees (JCC) of Doctors of BC and the BC Government.

      Shared Care Committee    Doctors of BC Ministry of Health logo