Pain management: a review of organisation models with integrated processes for the management of pain in adult cancer patients

Schoonhoven, L., Brink-Huis, A. and van Achterberg, T. (2008) Pain management: a review of organisation models with integrated processes for the management of pain in adult cancer patients. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 17, (15), 1986-2000. (doi:10.1111/j.1365-2702.2007.02228.x). (PMID:187505779).


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Aims and objectives: This paper reports a review of the literature conducted to identify organisation models in cancer pain management that contain integrated care processes and describe their effectiveness.

Background: Pain is experienced by 30–50% of cancer patients receiving treatment and by 70–90% of those with advanced disease. Efforts to improve pain management have been made through the development and dissemination of clinical guidelines. Early improvements in pain management were focussed on just one or two single processes such as pain assessment and patient education. Little is known about organisational models with multiple integrated processes throughout the course of the disease trajectory and concerning all stages of the care process.

Design: Systematic review.

Method: The review involved a systematic search of the literature, published between 1986–2006. Subject-specific keywords used to describe patients, disease, pain management interventions and integrated care processes, relevant for this review were selected using the thesaurus of the databases.

Conclusion: Institutional models, clinical pathways and consultation services are three alternative models for the integration of care processes in cancer pain management. A clinical pathway is a comprehensive institutionalisation model, whereas a pain consultation service is a ‘stand-alone’ model that can be integrated in a clinical pathway. Positive patient and process outcomes have been described for all three models, although the level of evidence is generally low. Evaluation of the quality of pain management must involve standardised measurements of both patient and process outcomes.

Relevance to clinical practice: We recommend the development of policies for referrals to a pain consultation service. These policies can be integrated within a clinical pathway. To evaluate the effectiveness of pain management models standardised outcome measures are needed.

Item Type: Article
ISSNs: 0962-1067 (print)
1365-2702 (electronic)
Keywords: cancer pain management, effectiveness,integrated processes, nursing, organisation models, systematic review
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0254 Neoplasms. Tumors. Oncology (including Cancer)
R Medicine > RT Nursing
Divisions: Faculty of Health Sciences
ePrint ID: 339233
Date Deposited: 28 May 2012 11:00
Last Modified: 27 Mar 2014 20:22

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