Over the past years the use of opioids by patients with chronic pain has dramatically increased. Since 2008, the number of opioid prescriptions for chronic pain has tripled in size. Within the Netherlands alone, approximately 500.000 people are momentarily using opioids. Besides the high costs associated with the prescription of opioids, opioid users are also at high risk of developing addiction and experiencing (serious) side effects. Furthermore, it remains unclear if the prescription of opioids is an effective treatment for patients with chronic pain.
“Within the Netherlands, almost 500.000 people are currently using opioids, and it is expected that approximately 10-20% of these patients will develop an dependency”
Although a (small) part of the opioid prescriptions are considered appropriate, such as for patients with severe, and otherwise untreatable pain following surgery or in case of (for example) oncological conditions. In most other cases the prescription of opioids is considered as inappropriate and undesirable care. However, opioid prescriptions are not always inappropriate and quitting or diminishing opioid use is often perceived as being a complicated and intricate process. Quitting or diminishing opioid use therefore requires an personal, active and supportive approach from the involved general practitioner.
This project aims to provide general practitioners with insight into their opioid prescription behaviour through the provision of feedback information. Thereby (permanently) changing their opioid prescribing behaviour where necessary.
The deïmplementation strategy consists out of a feedback information program, which is based on routine medical data obtained from the partaking general practitioner’s information system (HIS). The program consists out of multiple small interactive educational meetings within groups of general practitioners from the same practice, in which they will develop plans to change their prescribing practices based on personal feedback. For (some of the) meetings, pharmacists, practice assistants, psychologists or physical therapists will be invited to collaboratively work towards multidisciplinary arrangements for their respective neighbourhoods.
Planned start date: 1 June 2020
Planned duration: 2 year
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