Improve Chronic Opioid Management in Primary Care

The opioid crisis is a large and complex problem and requires a nuanced and multifaceted response. In 2016, a clinical research team at the University of Washington Department of Family Medicine and Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute developed The Six Building Blocks Program to address the crisis head-on by providing an evidence-based, guideline-driven opioid management process for primary care clinics managing chronic pain patients on long-term opioid therapy.

A clinician-led team at Stroudwater Associates worked closely with the University of Washington Department of Family Medicine and Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute to become practice facilitators of the Six Building Blocks Program.

An Evidence-Based Approach to Opioid Management
At Stroudwater, our opioid management team assists primary care clinics and provider practices to customize and integrate the Six Building Block Program into daily operations utilizing team-based care principles, including the following:

Evaluate Current State

Review Chronic Pain and Opioid Therapy Management policies and procedures, workflows, clinical protocols, staffing and infrastructure, roles and responsibilities within the clinics/practices.

Conduct Interviews

Conduct interviews with Practice and Quality leadership and other key stakeholders, including physicians and providers.

Identify and Provide Resources

Provide resources such as template tools and forms, opioid management continuing education resources, etc. as needed.

Perform a Gap Analysis

Identify clinical operational gaps and performance improvement opportunities and make recommendations to Practice and Quality leadership.

Facilitate Virtual Action Planning Sessions

Facilitate staff/leadership working sessions to determine priorities and develop an organizational Six Building Blocks Program Implementation Action Plan.

Educate and Train

Conduct leadership, provider, and staff education and training regarding the Six Building Blocks Program.

Provide Ongoing Support

Provide ongoing virtual implementation coaching and support to participating clinics and practices as mutually agreed.
Evaluate Current State

Evaluate Current State

Review Chronic Pain and Opioid Therapy Management policies and procedures, workflows, clinical protocols, staffing and infrastructure, roles and responsibilities within the clinics/practices.
Conduct Interviews

Conduct Interviews

Conduct interviews with Practice and Quality leadership and other key stakeholders, including physicians and providers.
Identify and Provide Resources

Identify and Provide Resources

Provide resources such as template tools and forms, opioid management continuing education resources, etc. as needed.
Perform a Gap Analysis

Perform a Gap Analysis

Identify clinical operational gaps and performance improvement opportunities and make recommendations to Practice and Quality leadership.
Facilitate Virtual Action Planning Sessions

Facilitate Virtual Action Planning Sessions

Facilitate staff/leadership working sessions to determine priorities and develop an organizational Six Building Blocks Program Implementation Action Plan.
Educate and Train

Educate and Train

Conduct leadership, provider, and staff education and training regarding the Six Building Blocks Program.
Provide Ongoing Support

Provide Ongoing Support

Provide ongoing virtual implementation coaching and support to participating clinics and practices as mutually agreed.

Opioid Overdoses Accelerate 30% During Pandemic: Primary Care Practices are Integral to the Solution

Nearly half of all dispensed opioid prescriptions come from primary care clinics and practices, placing primary care at the center of both the problem and solution. These healthcare facilities need a roadmap to improve opioid management of chronic pain patients and a way to reduce reliance on long-term opioid therapy as a primary treatment for chronic pain.

Our white paper dives into the continuing inconsistent prescribing patterns behind opioid prescription guidelines, what an evidence-based approach can do to opioid management, and the benefits of improving long-term opioid therapy.

Opioid Overprescribing Rates by State

In conjunction with the clinician-led team at Stroudwater, our data analysts developed a cloud-based dashboard using the CDC dispensing rates to identify the overprescribing rates at the county level for each state. To view your state and county, toggle between the dashboard below.

The Opioid Management Team

Connect with the Opioid Management Team

Primary care practices and clinics that implement the Six Building Blocks Program are seeing positive benefits for their patients, practitioners, and staff.

During a clinical trial, 20 rural and rural-serving clinics in Washington and Idaho received support to implement the Six Building Blocks Program. This resulted in fewer patients using chronic opioid therapies and fewer patients on high-dose opioids, reducing the risk of accidental overdose and death. Providers and staff are also less stressed knowing they have an approach to managing their patients.

To learn more about how the Six Building Blocks Program could benefit your primary care practice, please fill out the form.

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