Implementing a Process to Increase Inpatient Pain Management Consultations for Opioid-Tolerant Post-Surgical Patients

BACKGROUND: Despite an improved understanding of pain processes and pain management approaches, inadequately managed postoperative pain continues to be a significant healthcare problem for post-surgical opioid-tolerant patients (Gan, 2017). Effective postoperative pain management of opioid-tolerant patients requires a comprehensive, multidisciplinary approach, which could include a pain management consultation (Coluzzi et al., 2017). METHODS: Early recognition of patients with complex pain conditions, especially patients undergoing a surgical procedure, may improve outcomes (Hurst et al., 2017). Therefore, the main objective of this quality project was to implement an e-messaging alert process within the electronic medical record (EMR), appropriately identifying patients who may benefit from an inpatient pain management consult. INTERVENTION: After reviewing a daily report of perioperative opioid-tolerant patients, the pain management nurse practitioners utilized e-messaging within the EMR to alert the surgical service of opioid-tolerant patients undergoing a surgical procedure. RESULTS: A chi-square analysis indicated no significant relationship with notifying the surgical service via e-messaging and increasing the frequency and timeliness of consults to the inpatient pain management service. CONCLUSIONS: Chronic pain is difficult to manage and presents unique challenges, especially for opioid-tolerant post-surgical patients. Opioid-tolerant patients should be identified early to optimize a postoperative pain management plan. The electronic medical record may facilitate collaboration among specialties and effectively communicate the need for an inpatient pain management consult. Keywords: pain management, referral and consultation, patient satisfaction, quality improvement, length of stay, screening tools, opioid tolerant, postoperative, electronic medical record, patient outcomes



Work Title Implementing a Process to Increase Inpatient Pain Management Consultations for Opioid-Tolerant Post-Surgical Patients
Open Access
  1. Jennifer Hubbell
License No Copyright - U.S.
Work Type Project
  1. Dr. Shari Hrabovsky
  2. Dr. Barbara Birriel
  3. Dr. Nicole Peterson
Publication Date 2022
Deposited May 01, 2022




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Version 1

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    • Dr. Shari Hrabovsky, Dr. Barbara Birriel, Dr. Nicole Peterson
  • Added Creator Jennifer Hubbell
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    Publication Date
    • 2022
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