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Sparrow's new tool is helping to reduce the use and risk of opioids

Posted at 12:17 PM, Apr 05, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-05 13:50:43-04

Sparrow Hospital has a new initiative to reduce the use and risk of opioids. 

Sparrow Clinical Nurse Educator Ashley Meyers says Sparrow is no stranger to the opioid epidemic and the harm that can come with the use of opioids. They also know, however, that patients need good pain management- so they're aiming to reduce the associated risk, so they implemented a risk assessment tool. 

It's called the Michigan Opioid Safety Score. 

Upon admission, nurses perform a risk factor assessment on the patient and the "MOSS" tool, which is implemented into the EMR, will auto-calculate the patient's risk level as well as recommend intervention techniques to keep the patient safe.   

Craig Havican, Sparrow's Senior Application Analyst said in the first two years the hospital saw a significant decrease in the need for the use of Narcan, the reversal agent for opioids. 

Havican also said the scoring guide has been used in other hospitals on paper, but that Sparrow is the first in the nation to implement in into their electronic records. 

And since then, the hospital has seen harmful opioid related effects decrease by a third!