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A mixed-methods approach to investigating the adoption of evidence-based pain practices in nursing homes.

Ersek M, Jablonski A. A mixed-methods approach to investigating the adoption of evidence-based pain practices in nursing homes. Journal of gerontological nursing. 2014 Jul 1; 40(7):52-60.

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This mixed methods study examined perceived facilitators and obstacles to adopting evidence-based pain management protocols vis-a-vis documented practice changes that were measured using a chart audit tool. This analysis used data from a subgroup of four nursing homes that participated in a clinical trial. Focus group interviews with staff yielded qualitative data about perceived factors that affected their willingness and ability to use the protocols. Chart audits determined whether pain assessment and management practices changed over time in light of these reported facilitators and barriers. Reported facilitators included administrative support, staff consistency, and policy and procedure changes. Barriers were staff attitudes, regulatory issues, and provider mistrust of nurses' judgment. Overall, staff reported improvements in pain practices. These reports were corroborated by modest but significant increases in adherence to recommended practices. Change in clinical practice is complex and requires attention to both structural and process aspects of care.

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