The purpose of writing this article is to describe what added challenges people like us who are living with chronic pain are experiencing during the COVID-19 pandemic. We explore what this challenging time means to us and how it affects our lives, along with providing insight into our experiences. This is not a research study, but instead an article that shares perspectives from people with lived experience of chronic pain. Our narratives are presented to create an awareness of the plight for people already living with challenging health conditions and how the COVID-19 pandemic has added additional layers of vulnerability. While these stories offer brief accounts of some of the challenges we face, they also provide glimmers of hope that others with similar challenges can look to for inspiration. We also hope that our stories and reflections provide discussion points and perhaps even case studies for clinicians and policymakers who are working to strengthen clinical care and health systems for people with chronic conditions during pandemics such as COVID-19. Sharing our lived experiences with chronic pain during this global crisis may also spark critical conversations among all chronic pain stakeholders to ensure that we could continue to provide excellent care, strong self-management support and optimal health policy-making as this pandemic continues to unfold and for consideration for future health emergencies.
This article is associated with the Quality & Clinical Excellence lens of The Beryl Institute Experience Framework. (http://bit.ly/ExperienceFramework)
Hovey RB, Linkiewich D, Brachaniec M. Chronic pain, vulnerability and human spirit while living under the umbrella of COVID-19. Patient Experience Journal. 2020; 7(2):24-26. doi: 10.35680/2372-0247.1504.
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