AuthorMills, Olivia Anne
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
AbstractWhat seemed like a perfect solution in the 1990’s for the treatment of pain— which was once labeled by the Joint Commission as “the fifth vital sign”—has inadvertently led to a national crisis with tragic consequences (Baker, 2017). The Joint Commission, in 1997 stated that a patient had a right to be “free of pain”. This treatment mandate found a solution in opioids. Twenty years later, the “solution” has turned into a crisis of national urgency. Part of the reason for the rise in the use of opioids was the lack of education and understanding by health care professionals, including nurses, of the implications of the broad use of opioids in non-cancer settings. In response to the crisis, much thought and research has focused on changes to treatment options for pain, including better practices for opioid prescription and even alternatives. The goal of this thesis is to highlight new policies and perspectives that have evolved and will discuss the role that healthcare providers—with an emphasis on nurses—have to help solve the opioid crisis regarding the best practices for prescribing opioids for pain management and the best recommendations for health care professionals to educate patients about prescription opioids.