Professor & Co-Director, John A. Hartford Center of Geriatric Nursing Excellence
Associate Dean for Faculty
College of Nursing
The University of Iowa
“One of the biggest challenges that we face is getting clinicians to consistently use best practices. We do have recommendations and proper practice guidelines for care of older adults, about how to assess pain and how to treat pain effectively. The problem is that those recommendations have not been taken up and used across the board, so that all older patients in any care setting are getting good, quality pain care. So it’s a real challenge for us in the pain community to figure out strategies to help clinicians to recognize best practices and to incorporate them into their daily work.
Well my vision for pain management in an ideal world is that every older person would have access to health care, coordinated care, with an interdisciplinary team that would allow and foster a comprehensive evaluation of pain, recognition of pain in all of those who are experiencing it, and then a comprehensive plan of care that is implemented by a comprehensive team of caregivers from physicians to nurses to social workers to music therapists, anyone who is an important piece of the team is involved and part of the planning in the care that’s given, so that all older adults don’t suffer, and have the best quality of life and functioning they can in their elder years.”