A NSW Government website


About HIPS

Click on the link below for information about HIPS programs

HIPS Programs brochure

Clinical services

Hunter Integrated Pain Service (HIPS) provides education, multidisciplinary assessment and treatment groups for people experiencing chronic non-cancer and cancer pain.

The Acute Pain Service at John Hunter Hospital is linked to HIPS and manages post-operative and post-trauma pain.

HIPS also works collaboratively with the Complex Children's Pain Team at John Hunter Children's Hospital and the Palliative Care team at the Newcastle Calvary Mater Hospital.

The HIPS team includes clerical, nursing, physiotherapy and psychology staff, along with doctors from anaesthesia, liaison psychiatry and pain medicine.


HIPS provides a referral service for the Hunter New England region. Referral to HIPS requires a Medical Referral from GP or Specialist.  Medical referrals should be faxed to 4922 3893

Doctors currently working with Hunter Integrated Pain Service are:

  • Dr Chris Hayes (Specialist Pain Medicine Physician)
  • Dr Andrew Powell (Specialist Pain Medicine Physician)
  • Dr Mark Davies (Anaesthetist/Interventionalist pain medicine)
  • Dr Hema Rajappa (Specialist Pain Medicine Physician/Paediatrician)
  • Dr Ksenia Katyk (Specialist Pain Medicine Physician/Gynaecologist)
  • Dr Matthew Pols (Liaison Psychiatrist)

HIPS history

A co-ordinated approach to pain management in the public hospital system in Newcastle began with the establishment of the Acute Pain Service at John Hunter Hospital in 1993. The main focus was treatment of pain related to surgery and trauma. However, it soon became apparent that there was a need to expand the scope of the service to address other types of pain.

Hunter Integrated Pain Service (HIPS) was set up in 1997 to provide multidisciplinary care to people with chronic non-cancer and cancer pain. HIPS multidisciplinary team was based at Royal Newcastle Hospital and the major focus was chronic non-cancer pain. A procedural service for cancer pain was set up in collaboration with the Palliative Care team at Newcastle Calvary Mater Hospital. Collaboration continued with the Acute Pain Service at the John Hunter Hospital to provide early intervention in high risk groups to reduce progression to chronic pain.

From 1997 until early 2006, HIPS provided services to John Hunter Hospital and Newcastle Calvary Mater Hospitals from the Royal Newcastle Hospital base. In April 2006 HIPS moved with many other Royal Newcastle Hospital services to the John Hunter Campus.


  1. Holliday S, Hayes C, Jones L et al.  Prescribers or Multidisciplinarians? An Evaluation of Brief Education for General Practitioners on Chronic Pain Management. Health Education in Practice: Journal of Research for Professional Learning 2020; 3(1) http://dx.doi.org/10.339 66/hepj.3.1.14146
  2. Rajappa H, Hayes C. People, medicine, and society: An overview of chronic pain management. Arch Med Health Sci 2020;8:68-74
  3. Bruggink L, Hayes C, Lawrence G, Brain K, Holliday S. Chronic pain: Overlap and specificity in multimorbidity management. AJGP 2019; 48(10). doi: 10.31128
  4. Rajappa H, Wilson, M, White R, Blanchard M, Tardif H, Hayes C. Prioritizing a sequence of short-duration groups as the standardized pathway for chronic noncancer pain at an Australian tertiary multidisciplinary pain service: preliminary outcomes. PAIN Reports: 2019; 4(5): e780. doi: 10.1097/PR9.0000000000000780
  5. White R, Hayes C, Boyes AW, Fitzgerald S, Rajappa H, Paul CL. Training primary care providers in opioid deprescribing and chronic pain management based on local guidance: a pre–post study of attitude change. Health Education in Practice: Journal of Research for Professional Learning 2019 2(1)  http://dx.doi.org/10.33966/hepj.2.1.13209
  6. White R, Hayes C, Boyes AW, Chiu S, Paul CL. General practitioners and management of chronic noncancer pain: a cross-sectional survey of influences on opioid deprescribing. J Pain Research 2019;12:467-475. DOI: 10.2147/JPR.S168785.
  7. Brain K, Burrows TL, Rollo ME, Hayes C, Hodson FJ et al. The effect of a pilot dietary intervention on pain outcomes in patients attending a tertiary pain service. Nutrients 2019, 11, doi: 10.3390/nu11010181
  8. White, R. (2018). Media: painHEALTH: an evidence-based website for adult consumers experiencing musculoskeletal pain. Journal of Physiotherapy64(3), 202–203. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jphys.2018.03.001
  9. White RA, Hayes C, Boyes AW, Chiu S, Paul CL. Therapeutic alternatives for supporting GPs to deprescribe opioids: a cross sectional survey. BJGP Open 2018; DOI: 10.3399/bjgpopen18X101609
  10. Brain K, Burrows TL, Rollo ME, Chai LK, Clake ED, Hayes C, Hodson FJ, Collins CE. A systematic review and meta-analysis of nutrition interventions for chronic noncancer pain. J Hum Nutr Diet. 2018 https://doi.org/10.1111/jhn.12601
  11. Holliday S, Hayes C, Jones L, Gordon J, Harris N, Nicholas M. Prescribing wellness: comprehensive pain management outside specialist services. Aust Prescr 15 May 2018
  12. Brain K, Burrows T, Rollo ME, Hayes C, Hodson FJ, Collins CE. Population characteristics in a tertiary pain service cohort experiencing chronic non-cancer pain: weight status, comorbidities, and patient goals. Healthcare 2017;5(28). doi:10.3390/healthcare5020028
  13. Duggan A, Hayes C. Variation in dispensing opioid analgesics in Australia. Intern Med J. 2017 Apr;47(4):473-474. doi: 10.1111/imj.13394.
  14. Holliday S, Hayes C, Dunlop A, Morgan S, Tapley A, Henderson K, Larance B, Magin P. Protecting pain patients. The evaluation of a chronic pain educational intervention. Pain Med 2017 Mar 13. doi: 10.1093/pm/pnx018. [Epub ahead of print]
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  16. White R, Hayes C, White S, Hodson FJ. Using social media to challenge unwarranted clinical variation in the treatment of chronic non-cancer pain: the 'Brainman' story. J Pain Res. 2016;9:701-709.
  17. Tardif H, Arnold C, Hayes C, Eagar K. Establishment of the Australasian Electronic Persistent Pain Outcomes Collaboration. Pain Med DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/pm/pnw201 Published: 13 August 2016
  18. Smith N, Jordan M, White R, Bowman J, Hayes C. Assessment of adults experiencing chronic non-cancer pain: A randomized trial of group versus individual format at an Australian tertiary pain service. Pain Med 2016;17(2):278-94
  19. Holliday S, Dunlop A, Hayes C, Morgan S, Tapley A, Henderson K, Larance B, Shakeshaft A, Magin P. The evaluation of a brief educational pain management intervention amongst Australian GP registrars. Drug and Alcohol Review 2015;34(Supp. S1):32.
  20. Holliday S, Hayes C, Dunlop A. Opioid use in chronic non-cancer pain: Part 1 Known knowns and known unknowns. Australian Family Physician 2013;42(1/2):98-102
  21. Holliday S, Hayes C, Dunlop A. Opioid use in chronic non-cancer pain: Part 2 prescribing issues and alternatives. Australian Family Physician 2013;42(1/2):104-111
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  23. Hayes C, Jordan MS, Hodson FJ, Ritchard L. Ceasing Intrathecal Therapy in Chronic Non-Cancer Pain: An Invitation to Shift from Biomedical Focus to Active Management. PLoS ONE 2012;7(11): e49124. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0049124
  24. Hayes C, Naylor R, Egger G. Understanding chronic pain in a lifestyle context: the emergence of a whole person approach. American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine. 2012;6(5):421-429.
  25. Hayes C, Hodson F. A whole person approach to persistent pain: from conceptual framework to practical application. Pain Medicine 2011;12(12):1738-1749.
  26. Davies SJ, Hayes C, Quintner JL. System plasticity and integrated care: informed consumers guide clinical reorientation and system reorganisation. Pain Medicine 2011;12(1):4-8
  27. Phelan, C., Higgins, I., Hodson, F., Summons, P., Douglas, J., Dobson, P., Ritchard, L., Bruce, D., Mabbott, G. (2010) An Innovative Approach to Targeting Pain in Older People in the Acute Care Setting: A Pilot Study. Journal of Contemporary Nursing. 35(2):221-233
  28. Dobson, P. Hodson, F., Phelan, C., Douglas, J., Ritchard, L. Bruce, D., Mabbott, G., Higgins, I., Summons, P. (2009) The use of visual aids to enhance pain management in the acute care setting. HNEHandover, 39-40
  29. Hayes C, Armstrong-Brown A, Burstal R. Perioperative intravenous ketamine infusion for the prevention of persistent post-amputation pain: a randomised, controlled trial. Anaesthesia & Intensive Care 2004;32:330-338
  30. Higgins, I., Phelan, C., Hodson, F., Douglas, J., Ritchard, L., Summons, P., Dobson, P. Bruce, D., Mabbott, G. (2009) Targeting pain in older people in the acute care setting: The challenges of doing clinical research. HNEHandover, 37-38
  31. Hayes C, Browne S, Lantry G, Burstal R. Neuropathic pain in the acute pain service: a prospective survey. Acute Pain 2002;4:45-48
  32. Hayes C, Molloy A. Neuropathic pain in the perioperative period. Review. International Anesthesiology Clinics 1997;35(2):67-81