Implementation of clinical practice guidelines in a large setting is a complex process. This article describes the many issues encountered in trying to implement Agency for Health Care Policy and Research acute pain and cancer pain guidelines in an academic medical center. Issues addressed include the membership of the task forces involved, incorporation οf the guidelines into the institution-specific standards of care, selection and implementation of self-reporting tools for assessment of pain throughout the institution, issues involved in standardizing documentation of pain throughout the institution, measurement of the current status of pain control and integration into the existing quality assessment and improvement program, various analgesic interventions addressed throughout the hospital, educational strategies used and planned, and how multidisciplinary involvement was obtained.

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