Project Lead

Dr Megan Allen

Lead partner

Royal Melbourne Hospital

MacHSR Future Leaders Fellowship program (2023 cohort).

Opioid analgesia is a core component of effective perioperative pain management but, unfortunately, involves therapeutic risk. We have undertaken a traditional quality assurance cycle to scope perioperative opioid prescribing, use and handling, introduced stewardship measures and demonstrated improvements, but also persistent suboptimal practice. However, the measures to date have lacked understanding of the drivers of observed community opioid management in our patients. My proposal is developing a time-efficient evaluative framework to complement a traditional quality assurance cycle to explore patient perspectives on perioperative opioid stewardship measures.

Perioperative opioid stewardship is a health system and health service priority. My project will add context and understanding to the results produced in our earlier work. I am excited by the potential this approach has to be applied to other areas of clinical change, where quality assurance may be inadequate for a complete understanding.

I am also excited to work with leaders in health services research through MACH. I hope to both expand my research methodology skill base and my appreciation of how quantitative and qualitative methodologies can be optimally integrated to address complex problems.