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Excellence Every Day represents an MGH commitment to providing the highest quality, safest care that meets or exceeds all standards set by the hospital and external organizations.
Collaborative Governance Magnet Recognition Regulatory Readiness Innovation Units

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Ethics | Evidence-Based Practice | Fall Prevention | Pain | Patient Education/Health Literacy | Patient Experience
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Pain Management, an ALWAYS! event
Theresa Vachon, RN

PCA Policy Summary 2018

Sedation monitoring is required every 4 hours using the POSS, RASS or SBS Scales (see policy for details) Restricted drugs are 10mg/mL Morphine or Hydromorphone, or any concentration Fentanyl or Methadone

Daniel Huntington, RN

Conquering pain-related fear
(excerpt from Caring Headlines October 6, 2016 pg 8-9)

By Daniel Huntington, RN

...She was afraid of experiencing pain or injuring herself, which is why she had refused physical therapy the day before... Betty rated her pain at only 3 out of 10, but she was so fixated on the fear of pain that she practically froze, unable to move her rigid body.

I calmly looked into her eyes and asked her to trust me. Her grip on the walker relaxed, and I could see her fear and anxiety soften. I realized she had put her faith in me and was ready to take the next step. I can still remember the scared but excited look on her face as she started to stand. Betty had not stood in more than three weeks. Once she was steady on her feet, I placed one hand on her arm and the other around her back for support and to make her feel safe. Gradually, she lifted her foot and before she knew it, she had ambulated to the bath-room door. As anticipated, she was able to do most of the work herself, requiring very little assistance from me. She did so well and was so excited not to feel pain that she just kept going.     Read full article...


Updated HCAHPS Pain Scores as of 6/7/17

Composite score on questions:

Q13 How often was your pain well controlled?

Q14 How often did the hospital staff do everything they could to help you with your pain?

What HCAHPS Pain Scores Mean
(internal access only)


Policies, Procedures:
Click here to access complete listing 
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MGH Contacts:

Paul Arnstein, RN, PhD, FAAN
Clinical Nurse Specialist for Pain Relief, Pager #13386



MGH Cares About Pain Relief Program Newsletter

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Pain Treatment Planning

Theresa Vachon, RN




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@ Mass General

  Pain Management


  Non-Drug Techniques

   HealthStream Offerings
          (internal access only)

         Log onto HealthStream and search in catalog for Pain and          its relief at Mass General or use generic search term Pain

Pain Lookbook click here

MGH Pain Education Calendar 2018

Quality improvement projects

Medicine Pain Task Force
Improving Patient Experience Related to Pain on the General Medical Units


Joint Commission logo

2015 Joint Commission Standards Related to Pain

The assessment and management of pain is an important component of patient-centered care. Patients should expect that we will involve them in their assessment and treatment of pain while at Mass General. When developing a pain plan, both pharmacological and non-pharmacological strategies should be considered:

  • Pharmacologic: non-opiates, opiates, adjunct analgesics
  • Non-Pharmacologic: physical modalities ( for example, acupuncture therapy, chiropractic therapy, massage therapy, and physical therapy), relaxation therapy, and cognitive behavioral therapy

Staff can access the Joint Commission Accreditation Manual on any Partners-build computer by visiting Start/Partners Applications/Clinical References/Joint Commission - HOSP (internal access only)

Magnet Recognition

Magnet_logoThe American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) requires Magnet-designated organizations to track nationally-benchmarked nursing sensitive indicators (NSIs) to continually inform improvement efforts related enhance patient outcomes. Examples of NSIs include, but are not limited to: patient falls, hospital-acquired pressure ulcers, blood stream infections, ventilator-associated pneumonia, and restraint use.


There are numerous terms and acronyms in healthcare that may be unfamiliar. Please click here to visit a Glossary of Terms that may be helpful. And please email any suggested additions.

This month's featured term: Pain
For scientific and clinical purposes, the International Association for the Study of Pain defines pain as "an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage, or described in terms of such damage." Because of the Subjective Nature of pain,  The most commonly cited definition is by Margo McCaffery: "'Pain is whatever the experiencing person says it is, existing whenever he (the experiencing person) says it does.”

Excellence Every Day represents an MGH commitment to providing the highest quality, safest care that meets or exceeds all standards set by the hospital and external organizations.
If you have questions or suggestions related to the EED portal, please contact Georgia Peirce at (617) 724-9865 or via email at

updated 5/23/17

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