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AI-powered pain assessment solution launches in North America

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Two senior care facilities in Canada are the first long-term care facilities in North America to adopt technology that uses artificial intelligence (AI) technology to assess pain in residents. 

The PainChek® pain assessment solution was recently introduced at two Edmonton-based facilities, St. Michael’s Health Group and Sherwood Care (222 beds). These are the first pilot projects of their kind in North America and are already making a significant impact on the quality of care the facilities can provide for residents.  

PainChek® is the world’s first regulatory-cleared medical device for the assessment of pain, enabling best-practice pain management for people living with pain in any environment, from those who cannot reliably self-report their pain, to those who can, and for those whose ability to self-report their pain fluctuates. It uses artificial intelligence (AI) and facial recognition technology to detect and quantify pain in real-time by analyzing microfacial expressions indicative of pain. 

James Matthias, Head of Product at PainChek, says: “We are delighted to launch our pilot projects in the Edmonton region, which is a hub for innovation and has a fantastic artificial intelligence ecosystem. Moving into Canada means PainChek can better facilitate best practice pain management for residents who need it most. Sherwood Care and St Michael’s Health Group are leading by example in recognizing the importance of accurate pain assessment, and ensuring their residents have access to gold standard care and support.” 

Tatsiana Haidukevich, Director of Care, St Michael’s Health Group, comments: “As an innovative facility, we are constantly looking for advancements in care to improve residents’ quality of life. We consider ourselves lucky that we came across PainChek® through Edmonton Global, as it represents the next level of pain assessment.  

PainChek® is the world’s first regulatory-cleared medical device for the assessment of pain, enabling best-practice pain management for people living with pain in any environment, from those who cannot reliably self-report their pain, to those who can, and for those whose ability to self-report their pain fluctuates.

“As Director of Care, I consider best practice very important, and PainChek® has helped us provide best-practice pain assessment technology for our nurses and residents. Nurses now feel more confident in conducting thorough pain assessments, and families are very happy to see improvements in pain assessments and medication
management.” 

Pain management is one of the top quality indicators Sherwood Care is looking to improve on, according to its CEO Kathy Fortunat: “This was far too intriguing to pass up on and it matched our priorities,” she says. “It will improve the quality of life for our residents, and it will also improve the quality of work life for our staff. It’s not paper driven, it’s easier to trigger the assessment, and it’s easy to do.” 

Danielle Buchanan, Clinical Education and RAI Lead at Sherwood Care, adds: “I hope that use of PainChek will give us some real insight into some of our residents. They’re not able to tell us how they’re feeling. We see behaviors like agitation or vocalizations, and often, it’s just the norm to treat the behavior rather than looking into what’s the cause behind it. Our staff are really great at being detectives into what’s going on, and this is another great tool to use.” 

PainChek, which started out in Australia and is now the most popular clinical digital tool in Australian aged care, has conducted over 3,000,000 digital pain assessments worldwide, with 70,000 aged care beds contracted internationally across the UK, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, and now, Canada.  

The PainChek® app is available on smartphones and tablets and combines PainChek’s AI pain assessment tool, which intelligently automates the multidimensional pain assessment process, with the Numerical Rating Scale (NRS). This hybrid functionality allows accurate, consistent pain assessment at the point of care, and for care to be considered in PainChek’s detailed reporting suite, PainChek® Analytics. 

PainChek® has successfully supported accurate pain assessment and management for thousands of adults worldwide living with dementia, disability, or other conditions impacting their ability to self-report pain. It also has applications within hospitals, hospices, home care, and other care environments, where the PainChek technology is enabling more personalized and targeted care for individuals facing pain-related challenges.

PainChek® is the world’s first regulatory-cleared medical device for the assessment of pain, enabling best-practice pain management for people living with pain in any environment, from those who cannot reliably self-report their pain, those who can, and for those whose ability to self-report their pain fluctuates. 

PainChek’s vision is to give a voice to those who cannot reliably verbalize their pain.  

The PainChek® app is available on smartphone and tablets and combines PainChek’s AI pain assessment tool, which intelligently automates the multidimensional pain assessment process, with the Numerical Rating Scale (NRS). This hybrid functionality allows accurate, consistent pain assessment at the point of care, and for care to be considered in PainChek’s detailed reporting suite, PainChek® Analytics. 

Using PainChek®, facilities can: 

● Ensure greater consistency, continuity and diagnostic certainty in pain assessment and management by decreasing subjectivity and removing unintentional assessor bias

● Streamline the pain assessment process for time-poor carers, with access to the PainChek® tool, the NRS, pain trends, and charting in one solution

● Simplify record-keeping and documentation to demonstrate compliance and support funding claims, with all historical pain assessment data in one place

● Enhance engagement with GPs and allied healthcare professionals  

Clinical studies conducted in Australian and UK residential aged care centres have been published in various peer reviewed journals including Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease. An article in BMC Geriatrics indicates that PainChek® is a valid and reliable instrument to assess the presence and severity of pain in people with moderate-to-severe dementia living in aged care in the UK. Further information on clinical studies can be found here.  

PainChek® has successfully supported accurate pain assessment and management for thousands of adults worldwide living with dementia, disability, or other conditions impacting their ability to self-report pain. Building on this success of this technology, the clinically validated PainChek® Infant app identifies and detects six facial action units indicative of post-procedural pain in infants aged one month to 12 months.  

The PainChek® Infant app has received regulatory clearance in the UK, Australia, Europe, Singapore, Canada and New Zealand, with FDA review in the US currently in progress. 

The need for PainChek as a best-practice pain management solution also extends to older people living at home and with access to home care packages that enable long-term home living. PainChek is now expanding into home care by partnering with home care and disability service providers.  

For more information, visit: https://painchek.com

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