Making a Difference to Your Patients

So how might pain scoring tools make a meaningful difference to your patients?

In the ideal journey through the ED, your patient’s pain score is established at triage prompting appropriate analgesic provision. You repeat the patient’s score on consultation, using the same pain assessment tool prompting reassessment of the patient’s analgesic needs.

If the consultation is delayed, pain scoring with or without analgesia, is provided by nursing staff.

Frequent pain scoring prompting timely and effective analgesia is simple in theory but not necessarily found in practice. In fact, there is reasonable evidence to suggest that mandatory pain scoring (at least at triage) does not necessarily result in adequate analgesic provision3.

Learning Bite

Frequent pain scoring should identify the need for top-up analgesia.