Dr. Ballantyne trained in Anaesthesia at the John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, England, before moving to the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), Harvard University, Boston in 1990. She became Chief of the Division of Pain Medicine in MGH in 1999. She moved to the University of Washington in 2011 as UW Medicine Professor of Education and Research. She has editorial roles in several leading journals and textbooks, is a widely published author, and is involved in the development of on-line educational programs. In 2014 she was appointed President of Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing (PROP), a group that promotes rational opioid prescribing through advocacy, research and education.