Sickle Cell Guide

Sickle Cell Pain in the Emergency Department: A Guide to Improving Care

Strategies to improve care management of pain episodes for sickle cell disease patients.

Pain episodes are the most common reason for emergency department visits and hospitalizations for patients with sickle cell disease. Ensuring that patients receive timely, effective pain relief is one of the most important elements of delivering high quality care to individuals with sickle cell disease in the emergency department.

This implementation guide was developed for healthcare providers who care for individuals with sickle cell disease in hematology programs and acute care settings such as the emergency departments and day hospitals. It provides insights and lessons learned from multidisciplinary teams across the country that have succeeded in improving the management of pain episodes in emergency departments or day hospitals for both pediatric and adult patients as part of NICHQ's Working to Improve Sickle Cell Healthcare project.

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