Hospitals Asked to Monitor Pain

The Joint Commission of Accreditation of Health Care Organizations (JCAHO) has set new rules for hospitals concerning patient's pain.

Doctors and nurses need to start paying more attention to pain or their hospitals face loosing accreditation.

As of January1, JCAHO requires hospitals to access, monitor, and manage pain in all patients regularly. Advocates for the dying and terminally ill have argued for such a ruling for many years, saying medical professionals often ignore pain. This adds unnecessary suffering, only worsening a patient's life.

Healthcare officials will also be required to educate staff, patients, and relatives about managing pain.

The new regulations were published a year ago by JCAHO, allowing hospitals time to adjust to the policy. Surveys show 90% of accredited hospitals are already complying with the new standards.

Information from www.washingtonpost.com

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