National Cancer Pain Initiative Resource Center Supports State-Level Initiatives as They Implement Pain Management Practices

Supporting state cancer pain initiatives

From November 1992 through May 1996, faculty and staff at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health established the Resource Center, to support the growth and development of State Pain Initiatives. The initiatives formed a national organization, the American Alliance of Cancer Pain Initiatives (now called the Alliance of State Pain Initiatives), in 1996.

From February 2000 through June 2005, project staff continued to strengthen individual initiatives by providing resources, programs, training and consultation and an enhanced network of communication, as well as by cultivating collaborative relationships with other organizations with similar missions.

Key Results

  • The First Grant: ID# 020623

    • The Resource Center for State Pain Initiatives was established to provide information, guidance and technical assistance to health care professionals interested in establishing and/or strengthening Cancer Pain Initiatives in their states.
    • Almost all states established a State Pain Initiative during this period. Their primary mission was to improve the practice of pain management.
    • The Resource Center coordinated a program to increase awareness of the Cancer Pain Guideline released by the federal Agency for Health Care Policy and Research (AHCPR) in 1994. As a result, 3.6 million copies of the guideline were disseminated.
    • A Communications Toolbox enabled State Pain Initiatives to generate media interest in cancer pain.
    • The Resource Center organized and obtained funding for annual national meetings for State Pain Initiatives.
    • State Pain Initiatives formed the American Alliance of Cancer Pain Initiatives (AACPI). The AACPI's mission is to promote pain relief nationwide by working to overcome the barriers responsible for the under-treatment of pain. It is now called the Alliance of State Pain Initiatives.
  • The Second Grant: ID# 037589
    Project staff:

    • Updated the website and created two listservs for alliance members.
    • Conducted 90 site visits to 44 states and convened 12 stakeholder meetings.
    • Implemented six Practice Change Programs to help small health care organizations (hospitals, long-term care facilities, home health agencies) employ better pain management policies and practices. (Three more Practice Change Programs were conducted with other grant funds.)
    • Publicized new pain standards released by the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Health Care Organizations. The standards integrate pain assessment and pain management into the criteria used to accredit the nation's health care facilities.

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