The concept of ‘networking’ across public and private health care services is showing definite advantages in the Gwydir Shire, particularly with the recent development of a DVD aimed to support health care staff in the region who work with patients living with chronic pain.
In 2006, two projects in the New England/North West region gained Federal funding under the Local Palliative Care Grants Program. Collaboration between the two Project Officers, Angela Stones, from Hunter New England Health, Bingara/Warialda and Penny Abbington, from H N McLean Memorial Retirement Village in Inverell, resulted in a number of care planning and educational resources being developed for implementation across the project areas.
Over the last three months, Angela and Penny have produced an innovative DVD titled ‘The Impeccable Assessment of Pain’. This video will form part of a training package designed to educate care staff who work with persons who experience pain, in particular those persons who can no longer indicate they have pain, such as a person with dementia.
The DVD was launched at the Roxy Theatre, Bingara on Wednesday 23 July. Angela said the gestation period for this video is a classic example of how ‘from little things BIG things grow’. “It involved the close collaboration between the two Project Officers, and a most wonderful film maker living in rural down-town Bingara, Steve Webber from Gypsy Digital Video Productions,” Angela said.
“The concept for the DVD began with a seed of an idea, to educate staff who needed to increase their knowledge and confidence in understanding pain and undertaking assessment. Following consultation with Steve, Penny and I produced a very naive script, in the form of a two-page essay. Poor Steve must have been horrified when he received this, wondering what on earth he had let himself in for, in agreeing to work with such novices."
“Two days of filming, and in excess of 250 hours of editing, has created a very professionally finished product that will result in improving the quality of life for those living with chronic pain and those who are unable to verbalise their pain,” she said.