Capstone Project 4A
Pain management is a considerable aspect at the end of life care. Evidently, people develop different pain symptoms, hence the need for differentiated pain management strategies. Unfortunately, the mainstream pain management strategies concentrate on pain symptoms rather than the source of the pain (Mair, 2009). The main solution proposes patient training and extension of the current pain definition. This paper discusses methods that can be applied to evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed solution and possible variables.
Following an implementation of the proposed solution, a follow-up exercise is required to assess its effectiveness. The main strategy will involve surveys to evaluate views of the key participants (patients, nurses, and doctors), concerning the proposal. The survey will be designed to capture their attitude and rating towards the proposed solution. The method is effective, particularly when dealing with large population. Additionally, the method is of particular interest when the sample population is widely isolated in terms of geographical, social, and demographic factors. The method will use questionnaires, whereby, patients or caregivers will respond to specific questions that target their views towards the proposed solution. Successful implementation of the proposed solution will depend on the willingness of nurses and patients to change their attitude towards cancer and pain management. Thus, the survey method will provide a sufficient measure of the viability of the proposed solution. However, the method might not achieve accurate results due to lack of participation.
Secondly, researchers will be required to obtain the rate of prescriptions of strong opioids: Prescription of strong opioids indicates a lack of willingness to exploit alternative pain management strategies as indicated in the solution (Ferrel, Levy, & Paice, 2008). The method will depend on the official data obtained from selected health facilities. Successful implementation of the proposed solution would be indicated by the diminishing rate of strong opioids prescription. On the other hand, constant supply and prescription of strong opioids such as morphine will indicate a lack of implementation.
Alternatively, researchers can compare patient discharge reports before and after implementation of the proposed solution. This method will reflect patient’s willingness and ability to cope with their condition (Whitecar, Jonas, & Clasen, 2000). Moreover, the comparison would indicate the effectiveness of patient education programs initiated by the health facilities.
- Patient’s attitude and perception towards cancer pain
This variable will indicate the effectiveness of the proposed solution in shifting people’s attitude towards cancer pain. In particular, the variable will indicate self-acceptance and preparedness to deal with cancer pain. This variable can be measured using either of the techniques illustrated above. The variable will also indicate an increase of awareness among patients because of the proposed training.
- Rate of prescription of strong opioids
This variable will indicate a willingness and ability to exploit alternative pain management strategies. Moreover, the rate would indicate the impact of patient training in creating self-awareness among cancer patients.
- Competence of home caregivers
In this context, home caregivers refer to the specialized individuals capable of assessing and making an essential caring decision. The variable will indicate the popularity of patient’s education and increased acceptance among cancer patients. Competence of home caregivers will be dependent on their ability to make timely and accurate decisions. Collaboration with professional caregivers would also indicate their competence.
Ferrel, B., Levy, M.H. & Paice, J. (2008). Managing pain from advanced cancer in the palliative care setting, Clinical Journal of Onchology Nursing, 12 (4), 575-81.
Mair, J. (2009). Caring for people with chronic cancer pain, Journal of Community Nursing, 23 (5), Retrieved from http://www.cabdirect.org/abstracts/20103191291.html;jsessionid=068AB866513E2085DAA99062B77F7607?gitCommit=4.13.11-15-g9672536
Whitecar, P.S., Jonas, A.P., & Clasen, M.E. (2000). Managing pain in the dying patient. Am Fam Physician. 1; 61(3):755-64.