Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario

Nursing Best Practice Guidelines

Pre-Reading Information

• The focus of this edition of the guideline, Assessment and Management of Pain is on building the general core competencies (the skills and practices) of nurses for effective assessment and management of pain, without focusing on either the type or origin of pain.

• The intent of this guideline is to assist RNs and RPNs nurses and other members of the interprofessional team to focus on evidence-based strategies known to be effective in the assessment and management of pain, within the context of the provider-client relationship.

• The RNAO following are guiding principles in the assessment and management of pain:
 * Any person has the right to expect:
 -Their pain to be acknowledged and respected.
 -The best possible personalized evidence-based pain assessment and management including relevant bio-psychosocial components.
 -Ongoing information and education about the assessment and management of pain.
 -Involvement as an active participant in their own care in collaboration with the interprofessional team.
 -Communication and documentation among interprofessional team members involved in their care to monitor and manage their pain.

• This guideline offers recommendations on evidence-based care, which nurses and other health-care professionals can use as appropriate for their clients. Interprofessional health-care teams should work closely with those persons, their families and caregivers, to address the complex lifestyle, self-care and multiple treatment demands that may affect efforts to prevent or manage pain.

• Nurses can positively influence the assessment and management pain by promoting and participating in interprofessional health-care teams following these best practice guidelines