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Peer-Reviewed Journal: Opioid Discharge Support

June 3, 2021 at 12:47 PM

Assessment of postoperative opioid stewardship using a novel electronic-based automated text and phone messaging platform

 

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Highlights:

  • The text-message based program demonstrated the high engagement and accessibility for which Epharmix, now CareSignal, is known: over 80% of patients engaged with more than half of all messages.
  • The Deviceless RPM program enabled patients to report opioid usage, pain, refill requests and disposal behaviors to their clinician.
  • At the conclusion of the program, only 3.2% of patients requested an opioid refill after their initial prescription.
  • Patient-reported satisfaction with the level of communication and the messaging program experience was extremely positive; 96% of patients in the program reported high satisfaction with the level of communication with their provider and with their experience using the program.

Background: Practices of opioid prescribing vary widely across general surgery providers. The goal of this study was to use a text-based platform to assess postdischarge opioid utilization.

Methods: A prospective, cohort study enrolled adult patients undergoing operations across the following 3 general surgery sections: minimally invasive surgery, colorectal, and surgical oncology. Using Epharmix, an electronic text-based platform, short message service text messages were sent to enrolled patients on postdischarge days 1 to 7, 14, 2, and 28 inquiring about the number of opioid pills taken since discharge and pain medication refills.

Conclusion: A text-based platform can track reliably patients' opioid usage postdischarge. Such platforms may facilitate the development of data-driven, standardized practices of opioid prescribing matched to patients' anticipated opioid usage postdischarge.

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