2019 Australia-Harvard Fellows

Harvard Professor Rachel Coakley, the Director of Clinical Innovation and Outreach for the Pain Treatment Service at Boston Children's Hospital, visited Australia recently as one of our 2019 Australia-Harvard Fellows.

During her visit, Prof. Coakley helped clinical practitioners at Adelaide’s Women and Children’s Hospital to acquire the capabilities they need to implement her unique, research based “The Comfort Ability program (CAP)”. The CAP program provides training for adolescents and their parents or caregivers to help them better manage chronic pain. Children experiencing chronic pain are an underappreciated (and under resourced) problem, and the CAP initiative is a source if invaluable support and help for numerous families in the US and now also in Australia.

In addition to providing training for clinical staff, Prof. Coackley worked with other researchers in the pediatric pain, namely Dr Carolyn Berryman of the Robinson Research Institute to initiate and foster a broad program, incorporating collaboration between the Australian and Harvard based researchers, focused on identifying better treatments and management techniques for pediatric pain, as well as projects to evaluate and optimize the relevance and performance of the CAP problem for Australia’s environment.

Prof. Coakley was the guest of honor at the at the HCA’s South Australian’s Chapter’s “Drinks” event on August 1st, which was also attended by 2015 A-H Fellow Dr. Paul Jackson, as well as many other HCA members.