youngpainHEALTH was co-created in collaboration with young people with musculoskeletal pain to...

The core project team

Helen Slater
BAppSc(Phty), MAppSc(Phty),PhD, FACP

Professor, Curtin School of Allied Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, Curtin University, Perth Australia; Specialist Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist.

Helen is a practising Specialist Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist (Fellow of the Australian College of Physiotherapists 2007). She’s interested in working closely with young people to understand their care needs and improve access to the right pain care at the right time. Her interests extend to strengthening health services to improve the quality musculoskeletal pain care.

Andrew Briggs
BSc(Physio)(Hons), PhD, FACP

Professor, Curtin School of Allied Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, Curtin University, Perth Australia.

Andrew holds a full-time Professor position in the Faculty of Health Sciences, Curtin University and other senior clinical and health policy roles. At Curtin, he co-leads a research program with Professor Helen Slater, focussing on strengthening health systems locally and internationally to deliver the right care to people with chronic pain and musculoskeletal conditions. The research aims to build capacity in the workforce to support the delivery of the right care, in health policy, and to support people living with conditions to access the best care and information.

Jennifer Stinson

Professor, Lawrence S Bloomberg, Faculty of Nursing, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Child Health Evaluative Sciences, Research Institute, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Jennifer is a Professor, Nurse Clinician Scientist, and Nurse Practitioner in the SickKids Chronic Pain Program. Jennifer’s research focuses on pain and symptom management using digital technologies in children with chronic illnesses. She leads the iOUCH lab that focuses on Improving Outcomes in Child Health using digital technologies (Apps) for children and youth with painful chronic conditions. Clinically, Jennifer works with children and youth with chronic pain as part of an interdisciplinary team at SickKids.

Nardia-Rose Klem
BSc(Physio)(Hons), PhD

Teaching & Research Academic, Curtin School of Allied Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, Curtin University, Perth Australia; Clinical Physiotherapist.

Nardia is a physiotherapist and a researcher who is interested in understanding the experiences and stories of young people with persisting pain conditions. Her interests extend to better understanding the relationship between mental wellbeing and pain in young people.

Ben Low
BAgribus(Management), BSc(Oenology)

Lead Experience Designer from squawk designs based in Perth, Western Australia.

Ben has worked with Helen and the project team collaboratively across a number of health-related digital projects. Ben has a passion for working within the healthcare sector and its capacity to improve patient outcomes by applying Design Thinking practices.

Our expert content contributors

Mitchell Baillie
BSc(Sports Science), Grad Dip Exercise Rehabilitation

Challenging his original belief that “when I experienced pain, I was causing damage” was a difficult and confusing process. Mitchell recalls feeling his distress fading when he transitioned to viewing pain as a nervous system experience; an alarm triggered by a perceived threat. This allowed him to accept his body’s strength, resilience and health. Mitchell is currently working as an Accredited Exercise Physiologist and really enjoys coaching others to enjoy moving. In his spare time, he is most likely surfing, going to the gym, running and he’s just started learning to kite board.

Alysha Belcher
Alysha has been living with Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, fibromyalgia, osteoporosis, chronic fatigue syndrome, postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome, migraines, gastroparesis and more for 14 years.  Alysha lives with daily pain and fatigue but finding the right care team (GP, physiotherapist, psychologist, and other specialists) has allowed her to continue to live her life, including advocating for other young adults, while managing her own conditions. 
Ellyn Bicknell
BMedSci, MNutrDiet

Ellyn is a young person with lived experience of persistent musculoskeletal pain which she has been navigating since childhood. Ellyn is an early career Clinical Dietitian who finds joy in hearing the diverse stories and experiences of the communities she works with and loves taking time to move her body and get her hands dirty in her veggie garden. 

Anne Burke
BA(Hons), MPsych(Clin), Dip. Clin. Hyp., PhD

Associate Professor and Clinical psychologist, Psychology Department, Central Adelaide Local Health Network, Adelaide; School of Psychology, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, The University of Adelaide.

Anne is the Co-Director of Psychology at the Central Adelaide Local Health Network and the Past President of the Australian Pain Society. She is a Clinical Associate Professor at the University of Adelaide and a registered Clinical Psychologist. Anne’s primary research interests are in the management of pain and other chronic health conditions, the impact of waiting for services, clinical workforce issues, and health service design and delivery.

Jean Byrne

BA(Hons), BA(Hons) Grad Dip Psych, Grad Dip Ed, PhD

Authorised Yoga Teacher; Yoga Space and Wisdom Yoga Institute

Jean began practising yoga at the age of 19 while completing a Bachelor of Arts in World Religions and Philosophy. Jean became a student of the late Ashtanga Yoga Master Sri K. Pattabhi Jois and she is authorised by him to teach the Ashtanga method. Jean has lectured in Eastern philosophy at various Australian universities and has a PhD in Eastern Philosophy & Feminist Theory. She is a qualified primary school teacher, Childbirth Educator, a Yoga Alliance E-RYT500 and Registered Pre Natal Yoga Specialist Teacher (RPYT), and a senior member of Yoga Australia (YA). Jean co-ordinates the YA Teacher Training course at the Yoga Space. She is also an Honorary Research Fellow at Curtin University in Midwifery.

JP Caneiro
BSc(Physio), MSc(Sports Physio), PhD, FACP

Research Fellow, School of Allied Health; Curtin University, Perth, Australia; Clinical Director and Specialist Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist, Bodylogic Physiotherapy, Perth Australia.

JP has over 17 years of experience as a clinician, researcher and lecturer in the field of musculoskeletal pain management. He has published widely and presented his work at key conferences across the globe. He is an emerging leader in the field of chronic pain, particularly in the management of back pain and osteoarthritis.

Brooke Fehily
BSc(Neuroscience)(hons), MSc(Physio)

Brooke experienced chronic back pain for many years after an accident, and she positively managed her pain by educating herself, staying active, changing thinking patterns, seeking helpful guidance and most importantly allowing and embracing healthy change. Brooke continues to keep her mind flexible by always learning new things and challenging her ways of thinking. She is now a Physiotherapist and likes being there for, and helping people. Brooke likes to spend her spare time outdoors in nature and with wildlife, hiking and camping.

Carl Graham
BSc(Hons), MAPs

Clinical Psychologist, Fiona Stanley Hospital, Department of Anaesthesia and Pain Medicine, Perth Australia

Carl is a Clinical Psychologist who specialises in behavioural medicine with an emphasis on the treatment and management of chronic diseases. Carl has worked with the Pain Medicine Units at Fremantle Hospital and Fiona Stanley Hospital. Carl was involved with the award winning STEPS Pain Management program, which is now seen as a leading model in chronic pain treatment.

Brielle Hunt

Brielle was diagnosed with an autoimmune condition, as well as juvenile arthritis at the age of 4 years. Her juvenile arthritis was later re-diagnosed as rheumatoid arthritis at age 17. Brielle is in her first year of university studying a Bachelor of Science majoring in Psychology. She has a big passion for learning and sharing new knowledge, and cherishes time spent with her supportive family.

Maja de Langen
Maja de Langen

Maja developed CRPS after a foot injury and spent almost a year on crutches. She was studying medical anthropology at the time and wrote an award-winning master’s thesis about how persistent pain is known and enacted by different care practices.

She is currently studying medicine and hopes that her own pain experience will help her to advocate for patients with persistent pain.

Susie Lord


Specialist Pain Medicine Physician, Children’s Complex Pain Service, John Hunter Children’s Hospital, & Conjoint Senior Lecturer, School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Newcastle, Australia.

Susie is a member of the International Association for the Study of Pain, the Australian Pain Society and was inaugural chair of the APS Pain in Childhood Special Interest Group. She is involved with the electronic Persistent Pain Outcomes Collaboration (ePPOC) and has contributed to the Pain and Palliative Symptom (PaPaS) Cochrane Review Group and WHO guidelines. Her current interests include pain in childhood and adolescence, and improving pain care for Aboriginal, Māori, Pacific and Torres Strait Islander people and those living in regional, rural and remote areas.

Jane Munro

Associate Professor Paediatric Rheumatology, Royal Children’s Hospital, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, The University of Melbourne

Jane is a paediatric rheumatologist with a special interest in pain medicine. She has been a paediatric rheumatologist at the Royal Children’s Hospital since 2005, is an Associate Professor at the University of Melbourne, and is a Senior Research Fellow at the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute. Jane undertakes research in the area of Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis, childhood rheumatic diseases, and paediatric pain management. 

Abbie Norrish
BSc(Physio), Professional Certificate of Pain Science

Pain Revolution, Form Physiotherapy, Permission to Move.

Abbie grew up in rural WA surrounded by a lot of red dirt where access to healthcare was 3.5 hours away. After recovering from her own persistent pain experience, Abbie has become super passionate about increasing awareness and accessibility of best practice pain care in rural and remote areas.

Lucie O’Sullivan

Lucie is studying Philosophy, Politics, and Economics under the Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours) at the University of Western Australia. Her passion for social change and community empowerment has nurtured her interest in health communication and its positive impact on those that struggle to manage their pain.

Peter O’Sullivan
Dip Physio; Grad Dip Man Ther; PhD, FACP

Professor, Curtin School of Allied Health; Curtin University, Perth, Australia; Clinical Director, Specialist Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist, Bodylogic Physiotherapy, Perth Australia.

Peter is a Specialist Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist (as awarded by the Australian College of Physiotherapists in 2005) and Professor of Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy at Curtin University. Internationally recognised as a leading clinician, researcher and educator in Physiotherapy, Peter works with people living with pain to improve their quality of pain care and quality of life.

Michele Sterling

BPthy, Grad Dip Manip Physio, FACP, PhD

Professor, RECOVER Injury Research Centre, Director NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence in Road Traffic Injury Recovery, The University of Queensland, Australia.

Michele has been working in clinical pain research since the completion of her PhD in 2003. Prior to this, she was a clinical physiotherapist for over 20 years. Michele’s research focus has been on the mechanisms underlying the development of chronic pain following musculoskeletal injury; developing predictive models and clinical algorithms for outcomes after injury and developing effective interventions for people with musculoskeletal pain conditions.

Sophia Rogers

Sophia has experienced persistent pain from a young age and understands firsthand the challenges that come with managing chronic pain. As a teacher, she is passionate about increasing awareness and supporting pain management for children and young people with chronic pain. Her goal is to make a positive impact in the lives of those who suffer from chronic pain by advocating for greater awareness and accessibility of effective pain management strategies.

Rob Schütze

BSc(Psych)(Hons), Grad Dip Psych, BJourn, BA, MPsych, PhD

Research Fellow. School of Allied Health, Curtin University, Australia; Clinical Psychologist, Royal Perth Hospital and Body Logic Physiotherapy, Australia.

Rob is a Clinical Psychologist. His research and clinical interests focus on psychological aspects of persistent pain care, and integrated holistic and personalised care to help people with persistent pain get their lives back on track. Rob is currently a Research Fellow at the Curtin School of Allied Health where he is working across a range of funded pain-related projects focussed on improving the quality of pain care. He also conducts research and teaches at the School of Psychology, Curtin University, works at the Multidisciplinary Pain Management Centre, Royal Perth Hospital and at BodyLogic. 

Pavla Walsh

Rheumatologist, Pain Medicine Specialist, and Paediatric Specialist, Perth Children’s Hospital, Perth, Australia.

Pavla is a Paediatric Rheumatologist and Pain Medicine Specialist, with training and experience in the management of disorders of the musculoskeletal system in childhood. She also works with the Complex Pain and Paediatric Rheumatology teams at Perth Children’s Hospital, and the WA Specialist Pain Service in Cottesloe. Pavla trained in Paediatric Rheumatology and Pain Medicine through Princess Margaret Hospital, Fremantle Hospital, and the Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne. She became interested in pain management during her advanced Paediatric training.

Background information about the project

youngpainHEALTH was co-created in partnership with young people with lived experience of chronic musculoskeletal pain and clinical experts for young people living with persisting musculoskeletal pain. The project was led by Professor Helen Slater and Professor Andrew Briggs.

youngpainHEALTH was funded through a grant awarded by the Government of Western Australia, Department of Health, with in-kind support from Curtin University and the Child and Youth Health Network and the Musculoskeletal Health Network.

youngpainHEALTH provides accessible, credible and practical information, resources, tips and skills to help young people with pain to manage their pain and improve their quality of life.

All content has been peer-reviewed by clinical experts and reflects the current best evidence available at the time.

This is designed to support the implementation of health policies including the Western Australian Youth Health Policy 2018-2023: Strong body, strong minds – stronger youth, the National Strategic Action Plan for Pain Management and the National Action Plan for the Health of Children and Young People 2020–2030

"Our highest priority in developing this website is to enable access for all young Australians to reliable, practical, holistic and quality musculoskeletal pain care that supports their individual needs and goals."

Helen Slater
Helen Slater
Project coordinator

Our partners

youngpainHEALTH was funded through a grant awarded by the Government of Western Australia, Department of Health, with in-kind support from Curtin University and the Western Australian Health, Child and Youth Health Network and the Musculoskeletal Health Network.

  • Department of Health
  • Curtin University