On Monday, 29th April 2019, Dr Jonathan Hill (Senior Lecturer in Physiotherapy at Keele University) led the first Back-UP study Clinical Advisory Group (CAG). Present with Jonathan at Keele were seven doctors and professors from UK, Poland, the Netherlands and Norway, specialists in Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy, Primary Care, and Occupational Health Care.
Jonathan provided an overview of the proposed study and the work conducted to date on the Back-UP study including:
- A systematic review of European clinical guidelines for back and neck pain
- Proposed definitions of the inclusion and exclusion criteria for the study
- Adaptation of the existing evidence-based prognosis risk stratification tool, STarT MSK, for use in first-line management of back and neck pain across Europe
- A demonstration of the online Back-UP system using the Antari Homecare software
- Alignment of freely available, English language, high-quality patient self-management resources (leaflets or videos) with a clinical letter template that each patient will receive after their initial Back-UP appointment
The CAG then fruitfully debated and discussed how each clinical definitions and criteria would translate into the healthcare system of their country. Naturally, some variance exists between countries. Suggestions were pooled to formulate a more broadly inclusive set of clinical criteria and definitions. The Keele team will continue this work towards establishing a European Universally understood set of clinical criteria and treatment options by refining the pooled suggestions. An updated document will be circulated to clinical study colleagues on the CAG for further consideration and discussion.