BackCare is an independent British medical research charity devoted to the better management of lower back issues. It was established in 1968 as an organization as the National Back Pain Association, as part of the National Health Service. Today, BackCare as an organization is still in operation, serving millions of people through several different projects and activities. A main objective is to provide access to pain relief and improved quality of life for those who suffer from back pain.
The organization provides a variety of services to its members, which can include educational programs as well as financial and clinical assistance in managing pain management. Its main activities include: Providing online information and education on back care for chronic patients, particularly those diagnosed with a disabling condition or long-term illness; conducting periodic back pain assessments for senior citizens, children, and young people; disseminating guidelines for pain management; developing a national strategy for chronic pain management; and providing training in various aspects of daily living to pain management professionals. While all of these are important areas of expertise, the organization also conducts ongoing research into new ways to improve pain management and promote better back health among its membership. This is done through a range of methods such as a wide variety of surveys, focus groups, patient interviews, and a wide variety of other methodologies. One method of research that the organization has developed is called the “Back Care Excellence” project. The project brings together back care professionals and experts from throughout the United Kingdom to conduct focus groups on common problems, tips for improved back care, and the importance of maintaining proper body mechanics and posture.
The results of the Back Care Excellence project showed that there are many negative stereotypes and misconceptions about the role of back care within the medical profession. The research did not focus on back care treatment, but instead it looked into ways that improved awareness and practice can reduce the number of people seen each year in the emergency room. It also showed that a majority of people who presented to emergency rooms due to back pain did not require any sort of invasive intervention. Many were able to resolve their issues without any medication, exercise, stretching, or physical therapy at all. The organization is currently working on several other studies to further explore the issues surrounding pain management, and the role of exercise and exercises in daily living and the overall health of an individual.