To create pain units in Spain, more than a future challenge

More than a challenge for the future, the need to increase the number of pain units in Spain has become an objective for the present. This was one of the conclusions reached days ago on the course “Pain: approach strategy and patients”, held in San Lorenzo de El Escorial during the summer courses that counted with the participation of Juan Antonio Micí, director of the External Grünenthal Foundation Cathedra – University of Cádiz. 

This two days seminar was organised by the Spanish Society of Pain (SED) in collaboration with the Grümenthal Foundation and it analysed the most relevant challenges of pain and the patients’ role. 

Doctor Concepción Pérez, head of the Pain Unit of La Princesa Hospital in Madrid and spokesperson of the SED, reminded that in Spain there are 184 pain units in comparison with the 800 hospitals. Which solution did the group raise? To create a high qualified and multidisciplinary reference unit for each million inhabitants with access to complex therapies.

A pathology with own name

“We are in front of one of the most prevalent pathologies; with a huge social, economic, work, personal and psychological impact: with high expenses and high stress rates. It is a priority in the public health field”, Dr. César Margarit, from the pain unit of the General Hospital in Alicante, confirmed to sum up the problem of chronic pain in Spain.

This pathology, that affects to 20% of the population (that is, to eight millions of Spanish people), has been considered a disease in itself since 2010 and its treatment is also stipulated as a human right. This reality evidences the need to create units in charge of the treatment of  this pathology. As Concepción Pérez said, “the challenge is the multidisciplinary approach and to improve the quality of life of patients”.

A precedent in the treatment of chronic painA before and after on the fight against chronic pain and a precedent composed by 10 points that are already giving results could be the summary of El Escorial Statement, a document created in 2015 with just one goal: to give voice to those who suffer from pain and their relatives.

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