Jul 10, 2020 | pain management

Moving Mountains: Shifting the Pain Management Paradigm

In 2010, the Captain James A. Lovell Federal Healthcare Center became the first fully integrated facility caring for active duty, veterans, retirees, and dependents in the US. This presented healthcare professionals with unique challenges including how to address pain management in such a diverse population.

In 2017, a core team was tasked with the creation of a comprehensive pain management program to address their facility’s need for a cohesive and interdisciplinary approach to chronic pain management in light of the growing national opioid crisis.

The emphasis of this new program is to shift the facility’s focus away from a traditional biomedical curative pain management approach to one that emphasizes a more comprehensive biopsychosocial approach, which can empower patients to take on more responsibility for their pain management and overall functionality. Attendees will learn how this new comprehensive pain management approach has shifted the focus from “fix me” to “teach and empower me.” This journey of “moving mountains” will be illustrated by examining the pitfalls and specific challenges that were faced, as well as the pathways explored, to overcome and rise above these challenges.

The end result will reinforce the main goal of realigning the therapeutic relationship to being patient-centered vs provider-driven with the emphasis on improving overall quality of life and functionality. This focus will also speak on the paradigm shift not only for the patients but also for the providers/staff in order to create a common language that is shared facility wide in the realm of pain management.