Seeking Hospital Medical Specialists For Contract Positions: Pain Management and Opioid Prescription

NCPHN is seeking change agents in the hospital sector to improve pain management and reduce risk associated with opioid prescription.

The up-scheduling of OTC codeine from March 2018 has prompted a number of efforts to improve opiate and chronic pain management across the health system. North Coast Primary Health Network has designated funds to target this work.

As one component, the NCPHN is seeking to contract medical specialists 0.5 – 1 day per week to work with hospitals in Northern and Mid North Coast to reduce risks associated with prescription of opioids and improve the management of pain. This is expected to impact on the number of patients who struggle with opiate dependence as well as optimising acute pain management. The work should improve information to patients at hospital, planning for the duration for acute pain medications on leaving hospital settings, transition to community based care, access to follow up specialist advice and hospital management of patients with chronic pain.

The individuals should be in a petition to influence hospital practice, including in Emergency Departments, transitions of care and capacity of general practice to continue clinical leadership of the pain management.

The progress and impact of these positions will be overseen by a joint PHN-LHD governance group.

For more information please contact Dr Dan Ewald, NCPHN Lead Clinical Advisor, at [email protected] or 02 6618 5400 (Monday and Wednesday).

To express interest, please fill out the form below.

Click here for more information on how this funding will be used.

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The broader program of work will seek to make progress on these objectives.

  1. Ensure availability of education and mentoring of Hospital-based JMOs, Specialists, GPs, Pharmacists and allied mental health providers in managing patients with an stable opioid dependence in the community, including those with chronic pain
  2. Increase community understanding of risks resulting from opioid dependence; and uptake of alternative pain management options
  3. Ensure access to drug and alcohol/ psychological services, for people with substance misuse disorders following codeine rescheduling
  4. Develop the capacity of appropriate pain management services in primary health care
  5. Ensure availability of appropriate detox or maintenance treatment program for opioid management – including management of comorbidities
  6. Purchase aftercare services for people with stable substance misuse disorders exiting residential and rehabilitation programs across the region
  7. Establish and publish clear clinical health pathways for chronic pain management and opioid dependence
  8. Ensure process and procedure for appropriate handover of opioid prescription and use between hospital and primary health care – with particular reference to post-operative analgesia and emergency department prescribing.

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