Patient Safety Topic: ADE Opioids

April 29, 2022

Wellstar Sylvan Grove Hospital, a 25 bed critical access hospital located in Jackson, GA shared their journey to improved outcomes with adverse drug events – opioids on a recent Patient Safety Network webinar. Erica Fishell, MSN, RN, Director of Clinical Operations discussed the following interventions which have made a positive impact:

  1. Integration of Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs (PDMP) into Epic
  • The physician or nurse can easily click query the PDMP to see a snapshot of where the patient has had a controlled substance like an opioid prescribed, what the opioid is, the quantity filled, and where it was filled
  • Common practice with patients with non-acute and chronic complaints
  • Checked anytime a provider decides to prescribe an opioid
  1. FYI notes
  • FYI’s are tagged on patients’ charts that are within the Wellstar system and are private notes on the chart that can alert a provider of a potential opioid abuse
  • Notes will alert of seeking behavior or patterns of behavior that are concerning for opioid abuse and will recommend using a nonnarcotic means of treating their pain

See screen shots of PDMP:

Other helpful strategies include:

  • Not carrying Dilaudid in the Emergency Department
  • Recommending follow up with a chronic pain physician
  • Recommending utilization of nonnarcotic medications for chronic pain: lidoerm patches, Diclofenac topical ointments, IM or IV Toradol
  • Promoting healthier lifestyles with exercise and stretching (one physician actually shows the patient how to exercise and stretch)
  • Utilizing the in-patient swing bed unit for rehabilitation for patients with chronic debilitation and chronic pain conditions

Resources shared during the webinar:

For more information, view the presentation on the Alliant website.