Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Fayette | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Warren | Webster
Davis Motor Sales banner ad

Veterans Affairs Initiative Shows Early Promise in Reducing Use of Opioids for Chronic Pain

soldier flagKENTUCKY (2/25/14) — The Department of Veterans Affairs has initiated a multi-faceted approach to reduce the use of opioids among America’s Veterans using VA health care.

The Opioid Safety Initiative is a comprehensive effort to improve the quality of life for the hundreds of thousands of Veterans suffering from chronic pain.

Launched in October 2013 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, OSI is already demonstrating success in lowering dependency on this class of drugs. At eight sites of care in Minnesota, OSI practices have decreased high-dose opioid use by more than 50 percent.

OSI incorporates the team approach with the goal of reducing opioid use by alleviating a Veterans’ pain using non-prescription methods.

There is an emphasis on patient education, close patient monitoring with frequent feedback and Complementary and Alternative Medicine practices like acupuncture.

“We have developed and implemented joint pain management guidelines which encourage the use of other medications and therapies in lieu of habit forming opiates,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki. “Early results give us hope that we can reduce the use of opioids for Veterans suffering with chronic pain and share these best practices across our healthcare networks.”

The Opioid Safety Initiative faces the challenge of opioid dependency with an innovative and comprehensive plan that closely monitors VA’s dispensing practices system-wide and coordinates pain management to include patient and provider education, testing and tapering programs, and alternative therapies like acupuncture and behavior therapy.

Veterans enrolled in the VA health care system suffer from high rates of chronic pain.

Each VA facility employs personnel including Interdisciplinary Pain Medicine Specialty Teams and Consult Services, Facility Pain Committees, Pharmacy staff and Primary Care/PACT, and other professionals to accomplish the goals and objectives of the OSI.

VA has developed patient management initiatives including Pain Coach, which is a pain management app available for download by patients receiving pain management treatments, a Veterans’ Health Library, including a Patient/Family Management Toolkit, and resources for Pain Management on My HealtheVet.

All of these applications allow Veterans to better manage their pain without the use of opioids.

VA‘s measurement-based pain care includes the “Pain Scale,” which reduces uncertainty and helps Veterans by discussing the potential benefits of a medication and possible side-effects.

“The Opioid Safety Initiative is an example of VHA’s personalized, proactive and patient-centered approach to health care. We are also using a full-range of support treatments for Veterans, including Complementary and Alternative Medicine ,” said Dr. Robert Petzel, VA’s Under Secretary for Health. “We are delivering health care with the patient’s long-term personal health goals at the forefront.”

For more information, Veterans should contact their primary care health team. Visit U.S. Dept. of Veteran Affairs to learn more.

SurfKY News
Information provided by Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013

In Other News...

Kentucky ASAP Mini Grants Available for Local Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drug Prevention Agencies

HENDERSON, Ky. (8/27/14) — The Henderson County Local Kentucky Agency for Substance Abuse Policy Board community… Read More

Owensboro Police Department Activity Reports

OWENSBORO, Ky. (8/27/14) — Owensboro Police Department reported the following recent arrests and citations: John Hardy,… Read More
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013

Most Read This Week (Site-Wide)

August 25, 2014 4208

14-Year-Old Suffers Gunshot Wound; Air…

in Top Stories by Ami Clayton, SurfKY News
August 25, 2014 3787

Flooded Central City Church's Seven Day…

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
August 25, 2014 3344

Camper Stolen in Utica Recovered in…

in Top Stories by Martha Clark
August 25, 2014 2830

Daviess County Health Department…

in News by Dennis Beard, SurfKY News
August 25, 2014 2807

44th Mount Saint Joseph Picnic is Sunday,…

in News by Jennifer Kaminski

Most Read Stories from Hopkins County

August 25, 2014 4208

14-Year-Old Suffers Gunshot Wound; Air…

in Top Stories by Ami Clayton, SurfKY News
August 25, 2014 2353

Two Injured in Two-Vehicle Collision Near…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
August 25, 2014 2266

Former Co-Workers Trying to Raise Money…

in Top Stories by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director
August 24, 2014 2254

Two Injured in Two-Vehicle Collision…

in Top Stories by Officer Jeff Miller
August 26, 2014 1682

Two People Injured When Vehicle Overturns…

in Top Stories by Matt Sanderson

Most Read Stories from Owensboro

August 25, 2014 2830

Daviess County Health Department…

in News by Dennis Beard, SurfKY News
August 25, 2014 2807

44th Mount Saint Joseph Picnic is Sunday,…

in News by Jennifer Kaminski
August 25, 2014 2691

GRADD Seeking Ombudsman Program Volunteers

in News by Woody Maglinger
August 26, 2014 1973

Owensboro Board of Commissioners…

in News by Beth Cecil
August 26, 2014 1670

City Street Closures on Strawbridge and…

in News by Abby Shelton

Most Read Stories from Muhlenberg County

August 25, 2014 3787

Flooded Central City Church's Seven Day…

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
August 25, 2014 3344

Camper Stolen in Utica Recovered in…

in Top Stories by Martha Clark
August 25, 2014 2469

Mustangs Marching Classic

in Top Stories by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
August 25, 2014 2375

Job Corp Celebrates 50th Anniversary

in Top Stories by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
August 26, 2014 1661

Family Has Close Call with Tornado

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News

SurfKY News Group, Inc. Central Office & Printing Division
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431  •  270.452.2249 (fax)
Main Number: 270.452.2727 (phone)  •  Printing Division Direct Line: 270.821.8600 (phone)

SurfKY Owensboro News Bureau
920 Frederica St. / Suite 210  •  Owensboro, KY 42301  •  270.683-8060 (phone)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social 03social 04social 22social 21social 06