Leadership & consensus

Demonstrate leadership support and build organization-wide consensus to prioritize more selective and cautious opioid prescribing.

Why is this important?

Leadership plays an important role by both prioritizing the work and creating opportunities for conversations among providers and staff to reach a shared understanding of how patients on chronic opioid therapy are managed. They help set goals for clinic-wide performance targets and help providers and staff understand their roles and responsibilities with patients on chronic opioid therapy.

Dr. Cardinal, as CMO and Champion, agreed to have chronic opioid therapy on the provider agenda every month as a standing agenda item.

Example activities

  • Protect time for an opioid improvement team to meet
  • Emphasize project importance with updates at weekly and monthly staff meetings

Demonstrate leadership support and build organization-wide consensus to prioritize more selective and cautious opioid prescribing.

1. Leadership prioritizes the work 123 456 789 101112
The commitment of leadership in this clinic to improving management of patients on chronic opioid therapy… …is not visible or communicated. …is rarely visible, and communication about use of opioids for chronic pain patients is ad hoc and informal. …is sometimes visible and communication about patients on chronic opioid therapy is occasionally discussed in meetings. …is communicated consistently as an important element of meetings, case conferences, emails, internal communications, and celebrations of success.
2. Shared vision 123 456 789 101112
A shared vision for safer and more cautious opioid prescribing… …has not been formally considered or discussed by clinicians and staff. …has been discussed, and preliminary conversations regarding a clinic-wide opioid prescribing standard have begun. …has been partially achieved, but consensus regarding a clinic-wide opioid prescribing standard has not yet been reached. …has been fully achieved. Clinicians and staff consistently follow prescribing standards and practices.
3. Responsibilities assigned 123 456 789 101112
Responsibilities for practice change related to patients on chronic opioid therapy… …have not been assigned to designated leaders. …have been assigned to leaders, but no resources have been committed. …have been assigned to leaders with dedicated resources, but more support is needed. …have been assigned. Dedicated resources support protected time to meet and engage in practice change.

Leadership & Consensus resources

Opioid harm stories: Stories are the emotional drivers for engaging clinicians. Here are some personal stories of the harm caused by opioids.

Six Building Blocks self-assessment: A tool that can be used to measure status in the Six Building Blocks, both as a small group activity during site visits and by the Opioid Improvement Team to track progress over time.

CDC training and webinarsThe CDC has an interactive clinical training series and a webinar series available to the public.

UW TelePain: A clinical education resource.

Motivating slow to adopt providersSpecific strategies for encouraging providers to adopt the practices in the revised policies.

Levers of motivation guide: Ways to motivate providers and staff.

Chronic Pain Management TeamsThis resource supports the development of a Chronic Pain Management Team.