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Final Report Summary

Recipient: Klassen Rehabilitation Consulting,
Appelt Occupational Therapy Mindful Pain Management,
JL Smith Occupational Therapy Services Ltd.
Project: Mindfulness for Chronic Pain for Veterans and Families
Province: Alberta
Period: Fiscal year 2018-2019
Funding: $47,050


This project was created by a group of occupational therapists with training and certification to facilitate mindfulness meditation programs. They used meditation training and practice to help participants regulate their emotions and reduce their pain and suffering. Klassen Rehabilitation Consulting, Appelt OT/Mindful Pain Management, and JL Smith Occupational Therapy Services Ltd. developed and implemented the Mindfulness-Based Chronic Pain Management (MBCPM) program to ease the pain and suffering of people who live with chronic pain. Veterans and their families learned and practiced mindfulness meditation together in a small group. This 12-week course guided participants step-by-step through short meditations and self-exploration intended to reduce suffering and mental and physical pain.

Project Goals:

The Mindfulness-Based Chronic Pain Management (MBCPMTM) program was developed to ease the pain and suffering of people who live with chronic pain.

Project Activities:

  • Module 1: Learning about mindfulness and meditation practice
  • Module 2: Self-care and compassion
  • Module 3: Working on behaviours and self-awareness in relationships with others and with self

Project Results:

The target was to have 32 participants complete the program and participate in the research study. In total, 25 participants completed the Mindfulness Program. Outcome measures and surveys were administered prior to and on completion of the program.

The program has resulted in improvements in a number of areas for Veterans:

  • Pain Catastrophizing Scale (PCS) – Scores on the PCS for 81% of the participants decreased by the time of program completion, indicating a reduced perception of being disabled by pain. The PCS measures people’s perception of pain in three domains; rumination (persisting negative thoughts), magnification (fear-driven pain exacerbations), and helplessness (no control). Higher scores are associated with greater perceived disability.
  • Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS-29) – This tool measures people’s health and well-being from seven domains: depression, anxiety, physical function, pain interference, fatigue, sleep disturbance, and ability to participate in social roles and activities. Overall scores across the seven domains are reflected as a percentage ‘impact’ score, with higher scores indicating more significant pain impact. Seventy-six percent (76%) of participants reported a decrease in their total impact score on program completion.
  • Numeric Pain Scale – Participants were asked to rate their pain intensity ‘right now,’ ‘at best,’ ‘at worst’ and ‘usual’ on a 0-10 scale. At program completion, 66.6% reported a decrease in pain intensity.
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