Educate third year students about opioid use disorder and pain management

A new program at Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center provides specific training for third-year medical students in caring for a patient with an opioid use disorder.

A team of Ohio State investigators researched the success of a new in-clinic education system that provides more information about factors in managing use disorders including acute and chronic pain, buprenorphine treatment, and navigating specific addiction risk factors. What they found is that their new program is dramatically beneficial to medical students interacting with patients for the first time.

In an interview with HCP Live, study author Kimberly Hu, MD, a psychiatry resident at Ohio State University College of Medicine, discussed the motivation to launch a more immersive program on opioid use disorders for new trainees. in medicine. “Having this knowledge early on, and having some confidence and understanding of opioid use disorder, we thought would be helpful for our students,” Hu explained.

Hu also discussed the importance of timing with this program, which coincides with the first opportunity for third-year students to manage patients in the real world, while also having to navigate numerous specialty rounds.

“If a patient comes in and they’re in chronic pain and they say they’re still having pain symptoms even though they’re on opioid medication, they feel they need more of those drugs, it is helpful for students to have an understanding of what is of concern for addiction, how do they ask questions, and what kind of questions to ask,” Hu said.

Hu also reviewed the various factors and key points of the program, as well as the emphasis on discussing the role of each healthcare team in cases of opioid use disorder. She highlighted the impact such a comprehensive program could have on future physicians.

“When you try to take this knowledge from the book and transfer it into real-life interactions with patients, you can sometimes lose sight of the patient in front of you.”

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