Doctor of Nursing Practice
Family Nurse Practioner
Year Degree Awarded
Month Degree Awarded
Opioids, education, prescribing, substance, abuse
DNP Project Chair
Background: Prescription opioids have become a problem in the current opioid crisis, being inappropriately used by those who do not require them. The purpose of this DNP project was to increase the awareness, knowledge, and comfort level of nurse practitioners in relation to the CDC Guidelines for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain.
Methods: An educational program was used to inform Nurse Practitioners who were members of the Massachusetts Coalition of Nurse Practitioners of the CDC Guidelines for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain. A prescribing survey was initially given to determine their awareness, knowledge, and comfort level using the CDC Guidelines for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain. They then reviewed a synopsis of the CDC Guidelines and completed a survey regarding what they learned and how they might change practice according to the guidelines.
Results: Of the twelve nurse practitioners responding from practice settings, 45% of participants learned something new from the guidelines, and 36% said they would change the way that they practice based on the review of the guidelines. It was also evident that most (75%) were aware of the need to establish treatment goals with their patients in regards to opioid use.
Conclusion: The Nurse Practitioners surveyed were generally aware of the guidelines needed to safely prescribe opioids to avoid problem use, but did gain extra knowledge from reviewing the CDC Guidelines for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain. They were able to adequately express their own knowledge of the guidelines, whether or not they follow certain recommendations, and what affected the opioid use in their area.
Keywords: Opioid abuse, prescription opioids, CDC Guidelines for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain, Massachusetts Coalition of Nurse Practitioners, substance abuse
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