Increasing Provider Self-Efficacy to Manage Chronic Cancer Pain

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Aims: Pain is a significant problem for those with a cancer diagnosis. Oncology providers often use opioid therapy to manage cancer-related pain. Accessing opioid therapy has grown increasingly difficult because of the opioid epidemic. The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) released guidelines to optimize pain management for patients with oncologic diagnoses. The goal of this quality improvement project was to create an educational session and evaluate self-efficacy in providers who manage chronic cancer pain.


The Plan-Do-Study-Act was used as the framework for this quasi-experimental study with a pre/post education survey design.


Level 1 Trauma Center in Upstate, NY.


Family Nurse Practitioners and Physicians Assistants in a local cancer institute.


There was a voice over PowerPoint educational intervention used to discuss key points of the guidelines, which included addressing aberrant behaviors, safe opioid prescribing, and interdisciplinary pain management. A convenience sample size of 18 advanced practice providers (APP) were recruited from a level 1-trauma center in Upstate, New York. Participants reviewed the educational intervention and completed a series of surveys to assess tool satisfaction and self-efficacy scores.


Data analysis revealed a significant increase in the mean self-efficacy scores on the post-education Jackson Opioid Therapy Self-Efficacy tool. The educational intervention was associated with improved perceptions of self-efficacy when managing chronic cancer pain.


Based on the study's results, the guidelines released by ASCO should be reviewed and used to optimize pain management and self-efficacy in providers who work with oncologic patients. Furthermore, future research is recommended to evaluate the effect of evidence-based guidelines on patient outcomes and morbidity.


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