New Program Achieves Significant Benefits in Pain Pharmacotherapy

The Pharmacy Pain Management Service (PPMS) program was developed at the Kaweah Delta Medical Center in Visalia, CA with the objectives of optimizing pain management pharmacotherapy, minimizing opioid associated adverse events and achieving maximum impact on patients’ pain scores. Nine months after program roll out, the initiative reports significant achievement of these objectives. The innovative pharmacy directed inpatient program dedicated three full-time clinical pharmacists with pain management training to conduct a combination of “opioid stewardship” activities and physician-requested patient consultations.

The stewardship component of PPMS comprises a daily review of lists that include patients who are deemed to be at risk for opioid-related complications or inadequate analgesia. Provider-requested opioid consultations include a complete review of a patient’s medical records, a meeting with the patient to assess his or her pain, and treatment recommendations based on the obtained information. PPMS recommendations can include adding adjunctive pain medications for untreated pain, dose adjustments or conversions to a lower-risk pain medication. Read a news story about the program and its results here.

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