In light of the growing national opioid epidemic, several nursing schools are taking steps to prepare nurses to combat the evolving medical challenges presented by opioid misuse.
Schools such as the University of Pennsylvania and Marymount University have taken major steps to prepare nurses for how to care for patients who struggle with opioid misuse.
Peggy Compton has only been a nursing professor at the University of Pennsylvania’s medical school for one year but is already partnering up with Heath Schmidt, a nursing professor at the university, to teach an undergraduate class, Opioids: From Receptors to Epidemic, in the fall.
“We hope to have a very interdisciplinary student cohort, with students from policy, students who won’t necessarily be health professionals, students in anthropology, who knows," Compton said. "We wanted to open it up to everybody to make it not just nursing specific. Our hope is that we can have students who can attack this issue from all different levels.”
Compton said the classes were introduced in part because there has been inadequate training for nurses across the country in how to treat chronic pain and how to treat addiction.