App for chronic pain patients to reduce GP visits

GP practices across Leeds have become the first in the UK to give patients with chronic pain an app to encourage self care that aims to reduce pressure on primary care.

Around 7,000 patients have been offered access to the digital tool, which provides information to help them manage their condition and allows them to give feedback to their GP.

GP patient records are automatically updated with information patients provide through the app so that GPs can use the data before, during and after consultations.

Patients can also use the tool - called PainSense - to plan their pain management strategy.

GP pain management

The manufacturers of the app claim that trials of the system and a new pain pathway over the past year appear to have reduced patients’ need for hospital care, and believe the tool will reduce GP visits.

Dr Jamie O'Shea a clinical lead at Leeds West CCG said: ‘The pain toolkit app has recently been introduced in Leeds to encourage supported self-management of persistent pain. I have introduced this app to several patients who have unanimously provided extremely positive feedback and I am very confident we will see improved outcomes for this cohort of individuals.’

The app is set to be rolled out across other parts of the UK over the next six months. Around 8m people across the UK suffer pain.

Photo: iStock

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