Nurses' pain management practice following an educational program
Clinical research over the last decade supports the premise that the presence of pain lengthens recovery and impedes healing of patients following surgery. A program on pain management may improve pain management of post surgical patients. The purpose of this study is to examine the effects of a continuing education program on pain management practices of nurses working on post surgical units in one Midwest hospital. The Agency for Health Care Policy and Research (AHCPR) guidelines for Acute Pain Management will be used as a framework for pain management practices and serve as guidelines for the educational program. The anticipated sample size for surgical patients is 60 patients over a 4-month period. The 18 nurses attending the program will be from the surgical units. Following the program in pain management chart audits will occur to evaluate nurses' pain management practices based on AHCPR standards. Permission will be obtained from Ball State University and the participating hospital. Nurses who participate will be asked for consent to participate. The data from the chart audits will be anonymous of the patient's names. The study will be significant in demonstrating improvement in pain management of surgical patient according to AHCPR standards.