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Symposium highlights

June 25, 2013

Pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, nurse practitioners, and physicians assembled at Edmonton’s Chateau Lacombe early on June 15 to develop their skills and confidence for managing drugs of abuse.

Four expert speakers opened the morning by defining addiction and describing its signs and symptoms.

Participants then put the morning’s learning into practice in workshops. Each workshop presented a case study of a situation that could be encountered in any practice – a patient worried about becoming addicted, a patient displaying drug-seeking behavior, etc. Participants and facilitators worked together to identify the appropriate assessment, documentation, treatment and communication steps.

Groups discussed tips for mitigating drug diversion, such as checking Netcare and the ACP forgery alert and stolen TPP listings before dispensing. They also explored viewing patients displaying drug-seeking behaviours as opportunities for the practitioner to help resolve a health problem.

At the end of the day, participants left with up-to-the-minute resources and techniques, perhaps a few new collegial connections, and the confidence to provide better care for patients.

New tool

Symposium participants were introduced to a new ACP tool: the Chat, Check, and Chart Pain Management (Opioid) tool. This system uses the familiar three prime questions/four questions to evaluate appropriateness format, but has been tailored to assess and meet the needs of patients being treated for chronic non-cancer pain.

Did you know…

A list of forgery alerts and of stolen/missing TPPs is available to registrants on the ACP website under Prescriber Lists.