A Quality Improvement Pilot of Pharmacist-Led Identification of an Inpatient Population for Opioid Stewardship and Pain Management

Link to article at PubMed

J Pain Palliat Care Pharmacother. 2021 Apr 28:1-7. doi: 10.1080/15360288.2021.1883181. Online ahead of print.


The Joint Commission standards now include identification and monitoring patients at high-risk for adverse outcomes of opioid use. Our institution does not have a method to identify at-risk patients. This pilot aimed to assess feasibility of pharmacist-led identification of a population for pain management and opioid stewardship. All patients admitted to the hospital were screened; electronic health record reports identified all opioid, antidepressant, and benzodiazepine administrations within the previous 24 hours, and pertinent family and social history risk factors for Opioid Use Disorder (OUD) and opioid-induced respiratory depression (OIRD). Data were exported to spreadsheets and calculated risk scores for OUD and OIRD, and opioid utilization and morphine milligram equivalents (MME) were tabulated. Chart reviews were completed on patients identified as high risk for OUD or OIRD, if MME was 90 or greater, or those receiving four or more "as needed" opioid doses in the previous 24 hours. Potential regimen adjustments based on the primary investigator's judgment were categorized. Mean number of patients identified per day to receive stewardship was 13, and 18.6 potential interventions per day were identified. Based on results of this pilot, pharmacist-led identification of inpatients warranting pain and opioid stewardship is feasible at our institution.

PMID:33909543 | DOI:10.1080/15360288.2021.1883181

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