The National Forum for Health and Wellbeing is pleased to announce the next event in its series of open and free public seminars.

Title:  Understanding Chronic Pain & Community Services to Support People Living with Pain.

Venue: University of Central Lancashire, Preston campus

Date: 18 October 2023 at 18:00 hours for 18:30

The event is being organised in partnership with the School of Medicine and the University of Central Lancashire.

Chronic pain can be very debilitating and affects not only physical health but also mental health. It can affect productivity and social interactions. According to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) between one-third and one-half of the UK population (just under 28 million adults) are affected by chronic pain. According to research published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) the prevalence of significant persistent pain is around 23%, and increases with age, affecting 30% of older adults where as another study by Ceri J Phillips found that the impact of pain on economies is enormous, with the cost of back pain alone equivalent to more than a fifth of one country’s total health expenditure and 1.5% of its annual gross domestic product, while in another, it represents three-times the total cost of all types of cancer.

The seminar will cover:

  • What is pain?
  • Current concepts from pain science
  • Common presentations in pain services
  • Traditional pain services vs community pain services
  • Evidence informed holistic person centred pain care

Why the seminar is important:

Chronic pain is the biggest burden on global healthcare. Chances are, you either experience it or know someone who does. It is a personal experience and an invisible condition that for some people can lead to significant distress and/or disability. Coming to terms with losses imposed by chronic pain can at times be overwhelming for an individual. As yet, science hasn’t succeeded in providing a simple biomedical solution to chronic pain. Community pain services are developed to help people in making sense of this complex condition. Multidisciplinary teams play a vital role in supporting individuals to build upon their own strengths and manage their pain.

The speakers at the event are

  • Lizzy MacPhie, Clinical Lead for Central Lancashire Moving Well and Consultant Rheumatologist
  • Joanne Bishop, Clinical Lead for Pain and CFS/ME and Clinical Specialist Physiotherapist
  • Sanja Maretic, Clinical Specialist Osteopath

After talks, this interactive seminar will provide sufficient time for answering questions and concerns from the audience.

The event is free to attend and prior booking is not essential.

For further information, please contact:

Professor Romesh Gupta or

Sarifa Kabir


Speaker information

Dr Lizzy MacPhie, Consultant Rheumatologist , Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust

Dr Lizzy MacPhie is a Consultant Rheumatologist in Preston and Clinical Lead for the Integrated Musculoskeletal Service.  She works in a community based service and has been involved with the tender and then mobilisation of a new integrated service which has been a unique opportunity to be heavily involved with service redesign.  Dr MacPhie has held the roles of Chair of the Clinical Affairs Committee and Chair of the Standards, Audit and Guidelines Working Group at the British Society for Rheumatology.  She is a member of the QCommunity and a founder member of the BSR QI Special Interest Group. She has developed a particular interest in Quality Improvement through her work with service redesign and is an advocate of sharing good practice.  She has recently been appointed the Clinical and Care Professional Lead for Central and West Lancashire.



Joanne Bishop

Joanne Bishop is currently the clinical lead for the Central Lancashire Moving Well Community Pain and CFS service. A Physiotherapist by profession she qualified from Manchester University in 1998. Early in her career she developed a curiosity for understanding the complex nature of pain. She completed research posts exploring the effects of multidimensional groups to support people living with persistent pain. Joanne has earned a distinction at Masters level studying the management of pain. She has worked in 3 different multiprofessional pain services over the last 23 years providing the opportunity to work with and learn from many skilled pain clinicians. Most importantly to Joanne is the inspiration and learning she has acquired from the countless number of individuals who live day to day with the challenge of persistent pain. The privilege of being part of these individual journeys has informed her practice and the ethos of the Community pain team. 

Sanja Maretic


Sanja Maretic is a pain clinician working in the NHS Community Pain Management service in central Lancashire. Previous to this she worked in another Community Pain Management service on the east coast of Lincolnshire as well as in an independent practice in London. She completed her Masters Degree in Osteopathy from the University College of Osteopathy and has been committed to furthering her education in compassionate evidence-informed pain care ever since. Sanja studied comparative literature before entering the world of healthcare and weaves together skills and knowledge from both fields. Alongside clinical work, Sanja has published empirical papers about the role of Medical Humanities and intersectionality in undergraduate osteopathic education and she spoke on osteopathic conferences, educational institutions and podcasts about the role of narratives in health and pain, socially-informed pain care, and about intersection of art and healthcare. Sanja is deeply passionate about equitable and assessable pain care for people of all backgrounds.