Scripted Interactions Helpful in Assessing Patient Pain
research from the University of Virginia suggests that standardized interactions between nurses and pain patients can boost patient satisfaction and the effectiveness of pain management treatment.
In a study of 29 patients, researchers asked half of the assessing nurses to use a standard American Pain Society questionnaire and asked the other half to use a script to talk with patients about pain. Patients in the scripted group were given specifics about their medication schedule and asked whether pain had impacted their mobility, how their mood had been affected since arriving in the hospital, whether they felt satisfied with the approach to pain management, and whether they had attempted home treatment approaches to lessen the severity of the pain. The script was affixed to the nurses' mobile workstation on a laminated card.
Upon leaving the hospital, patients who received the pain script ranked their pain management an average of 8.27 out of a possible 10 points, 23 percent higher than the 6.33 baseline. In the unit where no scripting took place and standard protocol was followed, patient satisfaction with pain management declined from a baseline of 9.5 to 8.64, a 9 percent decrease.
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