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Certificate in Pain Assessment
and Management

Course Length

6 Weeks
12 Course Hrs


$79.00 USD


Pain assessment and management is a crucial part of compassionate and effective patient care. Healthcare providers must be more accurate with their pain assessment skills and more effective in their pain management strategies. Scientific advancements in the understanding of the mechanisms of pain, multidisciplinary methods of assessment and management, the wide array of integrative treatment strategies, and the improvement of medications to treat pain have contributed to the wealth of knowledge in this area.

The outcome of this certificate program is for the learner to describe key elements related to pain assessment and management, especially in specific populations.

Admission Requirements

There are no prerequisites to take this course.

Instructional Material Requirements

The instructional materials required for this course are included in enrollment and will be available online.

Computer Requirements

  • PC: Windows 8 or later.
  • Mac: macOS 10.6 or later.
  • Browser: The latest version of Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are preferred. Microsoft Edge and Safari are also compatible.
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader.
  • Java.
  • Software must be installed and fully operational before the course begins.

Completion Requirements

You must complete all lessons to receive your certificate. You must pass the final exam in all lessons with a score of 80% or higher AND complete the Evaluation Form in order to receive your Certificate of Completion. Finals are graded as Pass or No Pass. Receipt of your certificate indicates successful completion of the course and that you have passed all final exams with a score of 80% or greater. You may retake final exams as many times as necessary within the duration of the course at no additional charge.



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Pain Assessment & Management
Course Syllabus

Pain is a universal phenomenon. Pain is the fifth vital sign and its assessment is crucial in the comprehensive care of every patient. Pain is a subjective concept and is whatever the client says it is. Pain is experienced across all age groups, across all socioeconomic levels, and in all settings and exists within the context of a culture, as well as within personal, physical, and psychological history. Pain and the search for relief is one of the primary reasons a client accesses the healthcare system. It is also one of the most complex and challenging problems in health care and biology.
Effective pain management begins with effective pain assessment. Only after an assessment is completed can the healthcare provider determine how to best manage a client’s pain. Barriers to pain management that can lead to the undertreatment of pain need to be evaluated and, if relevant, addressed appropriately. Once an assessment is completed, interventions and treatment options are implemented and evaluated. Interventions and treatment options can include traditional pharmaceutical options as well as integrative therapies.

Health care professionals often face difficult challenges when working with clients who have undergone surgery or who have cancer or human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). These clients encounter unique problems with their health conditions, especially when trying to manage their pain.

Acute and chronic pain in the adult client have different causes, methods of diagnoses, and interventions. Effective health care providers understand these differences when they assess and manage their clients’ pain.

Helping pediatric and geriatric populations manage their pain requires special consideration regarding the types of medications and strategies chosen, the route through which medications are delivered, and specific comorbidities or metabolic issues that may be present.

Regardless of the cause, pain is a common symptom in clients who are near death. Healthcare providers must understand the tremendous implications of pain and pain symptoms and prioritize the assessment and optimal treatment of pain in clients near the end of life. They must be knowledgeable about alternative routes for analgesia and analgesic dosing and understand when to make referrals to palliative care providers and/or specialists to assist in the compassionate and effective management of pain during this time.

Many advances have been made in the treatment of cancer during the last several decades and yet effective cancer pain management remains an overwhelming issue for more than 80% of patients. Today, there are numerous options for cancer pain management, ranging from more traditional pharmacological treatments to integrative therapies, including complementary and alternative modalities. Increasingly, research links adequate pain control with improved survival for patients with cancer. The effective treatment of pain for cancer patients must include an examination of all possible treatment modalities in order to ensure the patient receives the most compassionate care available.

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