Document Type

Honors Thesis


Nurses are responsible for the pain assessment and the administration of opioids for their patients. Nurses use pain assessment tools and non-verbal indicators to ascertain the necessity of pain-relieving drugs. To further understand nurses’ behavior and attitudes regarding opioid medications and the resources nurses use to aid them in clinical decisions regarding opioids, a survey was administered to graduate nursing students at a large university. Subjects (n = 332) most commonly reported non-verbal cues and patient requests specific to drug names and doses as significant indicators of drug-seeking behavior. While most of the participants reported that they administer opioids in the workplace, they do not feel the administration of opioids is always necessary. Nearly half of respondents (n = 237, 112 [47.26%]) claim that they only use the opioid education resources provided by their employer “sometimes.” The remaining respondents either never use (57 [24.05%]) or often use (68 [28.69%]) these resources. Although most respondents chose employer resources as their main source of information, participants reported to be moderately confident (65 [28.76%]) to extremely confident (30 [13.27%]) in the usefulness of the education resources provided by their employer.

Publication Date






To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.