New Programs Offer Pain Management in Pediatric Medicine
The AP/Los Angeles Times on Sunday looked at new hospital programs developed in response to the American Academy of Pediatrics' 2001 statement on childhood pain. The policy urges physicians to reduce needless suffering by anticipating and assessing pain, developing soothing environments and increasing parental involvement. The AP/Times profiled Children's Hospital at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center's Pain-Free Program, in which specialists use "technology and creativity to reduce the pain and stress of medical procedures." The program team works with parents to provide them tips to prepare children for hospital visits. The team gathers specific information about how to put the children at ease, including providing comforting environments, individual DVD players with patients' favorite movies and letting children undergo anesthesia while being held by a parent. Dr. Joseph Hagan, a Vermont pediatrician who cowrote the policy, said that some doctors previously believed that "nurturing was the role of moms and dads. But, we're now taking responsibility for the fact we need to help them do that properly" (Ramer, AP/Los Angeles Times, 6/27).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.