What does the research involve?

PROMPPT is a 5-year research programme and launched in March 2019.

Year 1 started with the Q-PROMPPT study that aimed to find out about patients, clinical pharmacists and GPs’ experiences and views on:

  • Using regular medication, particularly opioids, for long-term pain
  • How pain medicines are currently managed and how they could be reviewed in future
  • The idea of clinical pharmacists in GP surgeries reviewing patients on regular opioids
  • What would make a pain medicines review relevant, useful and appealing to patients, clinical pharmacists and GPs

The information gathered from interviews, focus groups, and an online discussion forum is currently being analysed. The findings will be used, together with published best practice guidelines, to help design a clinical pharmacist review consultation (called PROMPPT) for patients using long-term opioids for persistent pain. The team will then test how this works in practice with patients and clinical pharmacists in GP surgeries and will use the feedback from patients, GPs, and clinical pharmacists to improve the PROMPPT review and clinical pharmacist training.

Next, a study of 80 patients will test how well clinical pharmacists deliver PROMPPT, whether it is acceptable and practical to deliver, and what proportion of patients agree to take part. The research team will make improvements based on the results.

Finally, a full-scale trial with over a 1000 patients will test whether delivering PROMPPT in GP practices leads to less opioid use, without making pain or pain interference worse, and whether this results in better use of NHS resources compared to usual GP care.