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Legal and social aspects of pain medicine

  • Lorraine E. de Gray
    Affiliations
    Lorraine E de Gray MD LLM (Medical Law) FRCA FFPMRCA is a Consultant in Anaesthesia and Pain Medicine at The Queen Elizabeth Hospital King's Lynn NHS Foundation Trust, UK. Conflict of Interest: none declared
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      Abstract

      Pain is the most common reason for patients to see a doctor. Socio-economic issues including unemployment and difficulty accessing education are common in such patients. Pain is the third leading cause for absence from work. Patients frequently seek support from their multidisciplinary pain team for welfare support and staying in or returning to employment or education. Pain physicians perform a range of intervention procedures and need to have a clear grasp of the law of consent. They are also called on to give expert evidence in personal injury and medical negligence claims where claimants have been left with chronic pain. This paper explores the legal and social infrastructure, and useful knowledge that should be at the fingertips of all those practising in the field of pain medicine.

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