The federal Inter-Agency Task Force’s release of its guidelines for Pain Management Best Practices, based on its mission to identify gaps in or inconsistencies between best practices for acute and chronic pain management, makes important preliminary recommendations.

• Pain management should be based on a biopsychosocial model of care.
• We can ensure better and safer opioid regulation through risk assessment based on patients’ biological, psychological, and social health history.
• Individualized, patient-centered care along with safe and appropriate prescribing is vital to addressing the public health pain crisis.

Recommendations will be finalized and submitted to Congress in 2019, following a 90-day public comment period.

New Strategies Mitigate Risk
The Task Force’s best practices reflect a growing consensus that the risks in using opioids in pain treatment cannot be reduced by restricting prescribing to a particular type of opioid or by avoiding the prescription of opioids to a particular type of patient.

This aligns with our biopsychosocial strategy to help mitigate risks, including limiting dose and duration without compromising effectiveness. This requires constant monitoring and reassessment to minimize the perils associated with long-term opioid use.

The Biopsychosocial Approach to Pain Management
Recommendations for pain and disability management support Carisk’s biopsychosocial approach, which encompasses a complex interconnection of biological, psychological, and social factors. As research continues to support, a thorough review of the injured worker’s case along with a comprehensive and individualized care plan helps ensure best possible outcomes.

We are gratified to see that the biopsychosocial model of care has been more widely embraced in recent years as the most holistic, patient-focused strategy for comprehending and treating chronic pain disorders.

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