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The Health Care Improvement Foundation Receives $247,000 Grant to Help Prevent Opioid Misuse among Post-Surgical Patients

Grant from the AmerisourceBergen Foundation will fund the nonprofit’s two-year pilot program

Published 10-01-18

Submitted by AmerisourceBergen Foundation

The Health Care Improvement Foundation (HCIF) launched a two-year pilot program that aims to help prevent chronic opioid use among post-surgical patients. The program, which is supported by a $247,000 grant from the AmerisourceBergen Foundation, will address the issue via patient education and engagement, as well as provider improvement strategies.

Persistent use of opioids remains one of the most common complications after elective surgery, according to recent reports. A study published in JAMA Surgery revealed that 6 percent of people who received opioids for the first time after surgery were still taking them three to six months later.

HCIF is partnering with the Pennsylvania National Surgical Quality Improvement Program Consortium (PANC), a voluntary association of 14 Pennsylvania medical centers across the state. As part of the program, called “Pennsylvania Opioid Surgical Stewardship Enterprise,” HCIF will also leverage existing collaboration among the surgical departments at the medical centers and recruit additional hospital-based surgical teams statewide to form a Patient and Family Advisory Council, as well as a Medical Advisory Council. The councils will guide the development and review of resources.

“At HCIF, we look forward to addressing this important topic with Pennsylvania surgical teams and partnering with patients across the state to develop health-literate materials to optimize patients’ understanding and engagement,” said Pam Braun, Vice President of Clinical Improvement at the Health Care Improvement Foundation.

HCIF has earned recognition for its ability to drive high-value healthcare through stakeholder collaboration and quality improvement initiatives, including regional efforts focused on medication safety issues such as antimicrobial stewardship, appropriate use of Hydromorphone and Computerized Prescriber Order Entry (CPOE) system evaluation.

Led by PANC Vice President Dr. Matthew Philp, who serves as the program’s Physician Champion and Principal Medical Advisor, the new initiative involves creating and disseminating resources meant to prevent opioid misuse. Resources will include patient education videos, procedure-specific opioid prescribing guidelines and suggested pain management plans.

“Our aim is to help guide clinicians prescribing opioids by developing education materials focused on setting preoperative expectations, perioperative prescribing and the use of postoperative non-opioid pain regimens. The process will involve educating patients about perioperative opioid use and safe disposal mechanisms for leftover medications,” Dr. Philp said. 

As part of its commitment to combat opioid misuse, the AmerisourceBergen Foundation partners with municipal entities and nonprofits at the local and national level to bolster efforts that address the issue through safe disposal, education around prevention and innovative solutions. The Foundation recently launched an Opioid Resource Grant Program that will enable the nonprofit to support and advance ideas from innovative nonprofits, in an effort to redefine best practices in the fight against the opioid epidemic.

“There is no one-size fits all approach to combating opioid misuse. To maximize our impact, we actively look to partner with organizations across the healthcare continuum to address the issue from a variety of angles,” said Gina Clark, President of the AmerisourceBergen Foundation. “We particularly seek preventive solutions – and HCIF’s program arms providers and patients with resources to help prevent misuse among post-surgical patients.”

About the Health Care Improvement Foundation

The Health Care Improvement Foundation (HCIF) is an independent nonprofit organization that drives high-value health care through stakeholder collaboration and targeted quality improvement initiatives. Based in Philadelphia, PA, HCIF is dedicated to the vision of a responsive, coordinated health care delivery system that fulfills the needs of patients and consumers, and achieves better health. Since its inception in 1980, HCIF has been recognized as an outstanding example of how advances in quality care can be achieved through large-scale collaborations.

About the AmerisourceBergen Foundation

The AmerisourceBergen Foundation is an independent not-for-profit charitable giving organization established by AmerisourceBergen Corporation to support health related causes that enrich the global community. The Foundation aims to improve the health and well-being of its patient populations – both human and animal – by investing in its communities. Through strategic partnerships and community collaboration, the Foundation works to expand access to quality healthcare and provide sources to ensure prescription drug safety. For more information, visit

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AmerisourceBergen Foundation logo

AmerisourceBergen Foundation

AmerisourceBergen Foundation

Established in 2014, the AmerisourceBergen Foundation makes charitable grants to fund programs and organizations that focus on health-related causes to enrich the lives of members of the community.

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