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What HIPS Offer

Introduction to HIPS

The first step is to attend a 90-minute introductory group seminar called ‘Introduction to HIPS’. The seminar is offered as a face-to-face session held at the John Hunter Hospital or as an online webinar. The seminars are offered both in the morning at 10am and limited afternoon sessions at 5pm. The seminars are run by a pain medicine specialist and will introduce you to the whole person approach to pain management recommended by HIPS. This involves gradually reducing reliance on medical treatments and switching to more effective strategies. This information will enable patients to make an informed decision about whether to proceed with HIPS.

Assessment and Planning

The typical next step is to attend a three and a half hour “Assessment & Planning” group workshop. The workshop is offered as a face-to-face session held at the John Hunter Hospital Campus. The workshop is run by a pain medicine specialist, a physiotherapist and a clinical psychologist. In the workshop the HIPS team will help patients assess contributors to ongoing pain and develop a customised recovery plan. The plan may include strategies about medication, physical and emotional health, diet and lifestyle. For most that decide to proceed further with HIPS, treatment will involve progressing along the HIPS group pathway. Others may choose to see health professionals in their local community.

Active Pain Treatment

The “Active Pain Treatment” group program involves attending the John Hunter Hospital Campus or online. The group runs for one half day per week for six consecutive weeks. The program is run by a physiotherapist, a nurse and a clinical psychologist. The program is designed to identify, develop, practise and finetune active strategies and is structured around the whole person approach.

Other Programs

Heal Your Pain

Heal Your Pain program is a pathway that explores the role of emotional health in the pain experience. The first step is a face to face 90-minute interview with a clinical psychologist to explore the mindbody link. After this there is an option to attend a face-to-face group program for two hours per week for four consecutive weeks. It is based on a treatment called Emotional Awareness and Expression Therapy (EAET).

Support With Weaning Medications

Support With Weaning Medications is a pathway providing opportunities to patients to learn more about medications used for chronic pain and review a medication weaning plan or develop one. The group program run by specialist pain nurses comprises a two-hour face to face program followed by phone support.


When individual support is indicated, HIPS offers an individual multidisciplinary appointment pathway based on the whole person approach. In the appointment, the HIPS team will help you assess contributors to your ongoing pain and develop your recovery plan. This will enable you to make an informed decision about how HIPS may further support you in your recovery.

Telehealth Options

For both group and individual pathways, HIPS offers telehealth options. Please phone our team on 02 4922 3435 to discuss how HIPS can best support you.

Pain Procedures

Pain related procedures can be offered in some circumstances, particularly for cancer related pain and end-of -life or palliative care.