Making Sense of Pain - a workshop for Health Professionals

Event Date
21st Jun 2018 to 22nd Jun 2018
8.30am - 4.30pm
2 days
Registration Closing Date
15th Jun 2018
Venue Information

Wylie Arthritis Centre

17 Lemnos Street Shenton Park WA 6008


On-site free!

About the venue

Course is fully catered.

John Quintner & Melanie Galbraith
John: 0419956418 Melanie: 0405963658;
General $220.00 ea

Event Description

We aim to provide participants with an enriched interprofessional identity: “With the focus of creating collaborative practitioners who will be able to care for the complex, chronic patients, it is more constructive to focus on their development as interprofessional clinicians.” [Susan Sterrett, 2015]

What does "Making Sense of Pain" have to offer offer that differs from other Pain Management workshops and seminars? Firstly, ours is the only interdisciplinary workshop in WA designed specifically for health professionals. Secondly, our workshop includes significant input from our "Pain Champions". Thirdly, we introduce the important concepts of intersubjectivity and "third space" engagement, as well as  considering different ways to reframe the experience of pain. Fourthly, we encourage health professionals to put into practice the new knowledge and skills that they have gained from attending our wokshop. 

NOTE: Arthritis and Osteoporosis WA  and the Health Department of WA have agreed to subsidise this Workshop, making it affordable for all interested health professionals. Numbers are limited to 20 registrants.

Event Information

This workshop is dedicated to the memory of Bob Elvey (1942 - 2013), a WA physiotherapist whose pioneering research has not only received world-wide acclaim but also has revolutionised the physical examination of the neck and upper limb.





Registration, Introduction (incl. methods of course evaluation), Case Study: John Quintner & Melanie Galbraith




Making a pain diagnosis: “Diagnosis is one of the commonest diseases.” John Quintner (9.30-10.00)


Scope of physiotherapy: “Use strengthens, disuse debilitates.” Melanie Galbraith (10.00-10.30)


Scope of Occupational Therapy: “Work is the best antidote to sorrow, my dear Watson.” Jacintha Bell (10.30-11.00)








How effective is medical treatment?  “How does your patient, doctor?”  Eric Visser


The psychological perspective: “Sleep is better than medicine.” Mary Roberts














Observing an assessment with a Pain Champion, incorporating “motivational interviewing”: Melanie Galbraith & Pain champion


Reflections: Jacintha Bell


Goal setting: A goal properly set is halfway reached.” Jacintha Bell


15.00 -15.15






Entering the “Third Space”: “A place for communication and engagement.” John Quintner and Melanie Galbraith









Video for Comments and Group Discussion




About Empathy: “Finding echoes of another person in yourself.” John Quintner


Stigma Explored: “Stigma is a process by which the reaction of others spoils normal identity.” Vance Locke








Pain and Stress: “It’s not stress that kills us, it is our reaction to it.” Vance Locke


Strategies for improving function: “Improvement begins with I.” Melanie Galbraith










Calming the troubled nervous system (Mindfulness & Relaxation): “Smile, breathe, and go slowly.” Jacintha Bell


Entering the Third Space with our Pain Champions (session 1): “A true champion will fight through anything.”






Entering the Third Space with our Pain Champions (session 2): “Feedback is the breakfast of champions.”

16.00 – 16.45


Case study (completion)

Course evaluation form

Networking opportunities





MS JACINTHA BELL BSc (OT). Jacintha is a senior occupational therapist, graduating with a BSc (Occupational Therapy) from Curtin University WA in 2001. She has over 16 years of experience as an OT. She is experienced in assessment and treatment in the areas of mental health and chronic pain. She has worked in psychiatric hospitals, community mental health services and pain clinics, providing individual and group interventions. Jacintha is currently working in the Pain Clinic at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, and privately at Painless and LifeWorks Occupational Therapy. She has a particular interest in helping people develop skills and strategies to overcome pain, in order to do the things they need to do and want to do in their lives. 

MS MELANIE GALBRAITH MSc Med (Pain Mgt), BSc (Physio). Melanie is a physiotherapist with over 20 years experience in Australia and the UK treating people with a broad range of musculoskeletal conditions. She was attached to the Fremantle Hospital Pain Medicine Unit for several years where she was involved in the development of the STEPS programme and in the management of patients with chronic pain. Melanie completed a MSc Med (Pain Mgt) through the University of Sydney and is currently working for Biosymm (an Occupational Physiotherapy company) as an Injury Management Consultant. Melanie has a  passion for both pain research and travel and is able to combine the two by regularly attending national and international conferences. 

DR VANCE LOCKE BA, MPsych, PhD. Clinical Psychologist. Vance has extensive clinical experience in pain management, many years of University teaching experience (including several teaching awards) and many academic publications. Vance currently works in the private and Government systems with children and adults, assisting them to deal with chronic pain.  He also engages with elite athletes helping them to achieve excellence and to manage injury rehabilitation. Vance was lucky enough to travel to the Commonwealth Games as part of the Games team in 2014. 

DR JOHN QUINTNER FFPMANZCA: Consultant Physician in Pain Medicine & Rheumatology (retired). John has spent many years in private consulting practice in Rheumatology and latterly as a Physician in Pain Medicine, Pain Medicine Unit, Fremantle Hospital. Co-author of a significant number of clinical and research publications in the area of chronic pain. Helped pioneer STEPS program at Fremantle Hospital, as well as gPEP and Rural Road Show. Now works as a volunteer with AOWA in the area of pain education.

MS MARY ROBERTS BA Hons (Psych), PhD candidate at Murdoch University and Clinical Psychology Registrar. Mary has considerable experience working with individuals with persistent pain, conducting group programmes that target pain management, sleep problems and stress management. She is also a health researcher and has been involved with a number of clinical trials involving adults and children with chronic pain, both at Fremantle Hospital and the Arthritis Foundation of Western Australia. Her PhD research investigated sleep disorders in patients with chronic pain through the Pain Medicine Unit, Fremantle Hospital and Murdoch University. She was the recipient of a PhD scholarship from the Australian Pain Society. She works in private practice, both at Arche Health and at the WA Specialist Pain Centre where she also facilitates pain management programs.

PROFESSOR ERIC VISSER FANZCA FFPMANZCA. Eric holds the inaugural Churack Chair for Chronic Pain Education and Research at the University of Notre Dame School of Medicine. He is also clinical senior lecturer at UWA and examiner for the Faculty of Pain Medicine, which is responsible for the training of Pain Medicine specialists in Australia and New Zealand. Eric is the Director of Pain Science WA at Joondalup Health Campus.

PAIN CHAMPIONS: to be announced closer to time.

 About our workshop:

1. We not only provide the 'What' - information about evidence-based management of people experiencing chronic pain, but also the 'How' - how to put this information into practice.

2. We will help you to improve your interactions with people experiencing pain to ensure more positive outcomes for both parties.

3. We give you the opportunity to interact with "pain champions" - real people who are living with chronic pain.

4. Our workshop is informal and highly inter-interactive.

5. You will be encouraged to reflect upon your beliefs and attitudes to people experiencing pain. Reflective decision making is a core element in clinical reasoning.

6. You can join a networking group of past workshop attendees and presenters.

On completion of the course you will be able to:

(a) know how to make a rational pain diagnosis and understand the basics of medical treatment.and pain management.

(b) recognise the important role of dysregulated stress response systems in people with chronic pain.

(c) accurately assess the impact of the experience of chronic pain on the individual across social, psychological, medical and functional domains (including how to use standardized outcome measures).

(d) promote behavioural change and institute self-management strategies (participants will be exposed to motivational interviewing, mindfulness practice, relaxation, and other techniques of education to promote behavioural change) and to know when referral to other health professionals might be indicated.

(e) have a deeper understanding of the experience of the person in pain and the importance of intersubjectivity in the clinical engagement.

(f) be more aware of the influence of your personal beliefs, attitude(s) and communication style when interacting with chronic pain sufferers.

(g) better understand the centrality of the therapeutic alliance in effecting positive change outcomes.

(h) improve your communication with the person experiencing pain based on an understanding of empathy, in all its connotations, and an awareness of the sometimes inadvertent potential for stigmatisation.

(i) provide your patients with an accurate, empathic, and confident explanation of their socio-psycho-biomedical predicament.


Early bird: $220 (incl GST) - up until 18th May

Late bird: $300 (incl GST) - closes 19th June

Click here for the registration form.

For more information please contact Melanie by email:  or John by Mobile: 0419 956 418 or email John: