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Supporting Teens with Chronic Pain to Obtain High School Credits: Chronic Pain 35 in Alberta

Stollery Children’s Hospital, Alberta Health Services, Edmonton, AB T6G 2B7, Canada
Department of Anaesthesiology and Pain Medicine, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB T6G 2R3, Canada
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Carl L. von Baeyer
Children 2016, 3(4), 31;
Received: 16 September 2016 / Revised: 4 November 2016 / Accepted: 7 November 2016 / Published: 19 November 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chronic and Recurrent Pain)
Chronic pain is a significant problem in children and teens, and adolescents with chronic pain often struggle to attend school on a regular basis. We present in this article a novel program we developed that integrates attendance at a group cognitive-behavioural chronic pain self-management program with earning high school credits. We collaborated with Alberta Education in the development of this course, Chronic Pain 35. Adolescents who choose to enroll are invited to demonstrate their scientific knowledge related to pain, understanding of and engagement with treatment homework, and demonstrate their creativity by completing a project, which demonstrates at least one concept. Integrating Chronic Pain 35 into an adolescent’s academic achievements is a creative strategy that facilitates the engagement of adolescents in learning and adopting pain coping techniques. It also helps teens to advocate for themselves in the school environment and improve their parents’ and teachers’ understanding of adolescent chronic pain. This is one of the first successful collaborations between a pediatric health program and provincial education leaders, aimed at integrating learning and obtaining school credit for learning about and engaging in health self-management for teens. The authors hope this paper serves as an effective reference model for any future collaborating programs aimed at supporting teens with chronic pain to obtain high school credits. View Full-Text
Keywords: chronic pain; adolescent; school; cognitive-behavioural therapy chronic pain; adolescent; school; cognitive-behavioural therapy
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Reid, K.; Simmonds, M.; Verrier, M.; Dick, B. Supporting Teens with Chronic Pain to Obtain High School Credits: Chronic Pain 35 in Alberta. Children 2016, 3, 31.

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