Enhancing the Safe and Effective Management of Chronic Pain in Accountable Care Organization Primary Care Practices in Kentucky

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Abstract

Chronic pain is a prevalent chronic condition with significant burden and economic impact in the United States. Chronic pain is particularly abundant in primary care, with an estimated 52% of chronic pain patients obtaining care from primary care physicians (PCPs). However, PCPs often lack adequate training and have limited time and resources to effectively manage chronic pain. Chronic pain management is complex in nature because of high co-occurrence of psychiatric disorders and other medical comorbidities in patients. This article describes a quality improvement initiative conducted by the American College of Physicians (ACP), in collaboration with the Kentucky ACP Chapter, and the Center for Health Services and Outcomes Research at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, to enhance chronic pain management in 8 primary care practices participating in Accountable Care Organizations in Kentucky, with a goal of enhancing the screening, diagnosis, and treatment of patients with chronic pain.

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