Pain Management

Persistent Pain Service is a time limited and management advice service which aims to help patients understand their ongoing pain and improve their quality of life


North South North West Statewide


Persistent Pain Management Services are not intended to be diagnostic services but do offer consultative, time limited treatment and management advice with the aim of helping people understand their pain, improve quality of life and functionality in the presence of persistent pain.

Please refer to Screening/Referral Guidelines

  • Low back pain: Pain Management Service sees patients that are not suited for Spinal Assessment Clinic. Patients may be referred onto Spinal Assessment Clinic.
  • Patients on waitlists for surgery or needing assessment for section 59E of Pharmaceutical Act are not seen
  • Referrals for patients on Opioids who wish to improve their coping strategies will be accepted
  • Diagnostic procedural pathways are offered by secondary referral onward from other specialist outpatient services at THS.

Emergency conditions

Patients with the following symptoms and signs should be referred to other services urgently:

  • Previous history malignancy (however long ago)
  • Age 16< or >60 with new onset pain
  • Weight loss (unexplained)
  • Previous longstanding steroid use
  • Recent serious illness
  • Recent significant infection
  • Saddle anaesthesia
  • Reduced anal tone
  • Hip or knee weakness
  • Generalised neurological deficit
  • Progressive spinal deformity
  • Urinary retention

Referral process

A referral (preferably faxed) is required for all new appointments and must conform to the Referral Standards as outlined on For Clinicians, including imaging reports and films (if available).

Please refer to Screening/Referral Guidelines.

Patients deemed suitable to receive service are then asked to complete an in depth questionnaire to help us get a better idea of how they are managing their pain at the moment. Patients may require assistance to fill this out.

When this is received back from patient. They are invited to an information session, where we explain a lot more about how pain actually works and suggest some things you can safely try straight away.

Patients then decide if they believe the service can assist them. The patient will be invited to a multidisciplinary assessment, where they will talk to a doctor, a physiotherapist, a nurse and a psychologist who will work with them to come up with an action plan.

Patients maybe invited to join a short six week group program called Moving with Pain.

Clinic Appointments - Appointments are based on clinical priority:


Proceed to Emergency Department (ED). Please contact ED Medical Officer in Charge:
– Phone: (03) 6777 6405  Fax: (03) 6777 5201
– Phone: (03) 6478 5120  Fax: (03) 6441 5923
– Phone: (03) 6493 6340  Fax: (03) 6464 1926
– Phone: (03) 6166 6100  Fax: (03) 6173 0489

Urgent / category 1

Urgent referrals should be accompanied by a phone call to the Consultant/Registrar to organise urgent review and the referral must be faxed.

We will endeavour to see these patients within four weeks, or sooner if clinically indicated.

Semi-urgent / category 2

We will endeavour to see these patients within 12 weeks

Routine / category 3

Next available appointment

Referral template

For use by health professionals only

Additional information