Innovative Telementoring for Pain Management: Project ECHO Pain Academic Article uri icon



    ProjectECHOPain, the innovativetelementoring program for health professionals, was developed in 2009 at the University Of New Mexico Health Sciences Center to fill considerable gaps in painmanagement expertise. Substantive continuing education for clinicians who practice in rural and underserved communities convenes weekly by means of telehealth technology. Case-based learning, demonstrations, and didactics are incorporated into the interprofessional program that helps to improve painmanagement in the primary care setting.


    Three different approaches were used to evaluate the program over a 3-year period: (1) evaluation of all weekly continuing medical education surveys; (2) aggregation of annual clinic data; and (3) assessment of practice change in clinicians who joined ProjectECHOPain for at least 1 year.


    Between January 2010 and December 2012, 136 ProjectECHOPain clinics were held, with 3835 total instances of participation, representing 763 unique individuals from 191 different sites. Sixty percent self-identified as advanced practice or other nonphysician health professional. Statistically significant improvements in participant self-reported knowledge, skills, and practice were demonstrated. Focus group analyses of 9 subjects detailed specific practice improvements.


    ProjectECHOPain is a successful continuing professional development program. The telementoring model closes the large knowledge gap in pain education seen in primary care and other settings. Expertise is delivered by implementing effective, evidence-based, and work-based education for diverse health professionals. ProjectECHOPain serves as a model for interprofessional collaborative practice.

    © 2014 The Alliance for Continuing Education in the Health Professions, the Society for Academic Continuing Medical Education, and the Council on Continuing Medical Education, Association for Hospital Medical Education.


    ProjectECHO; chronic pain; community of practice/knowledge networks; evaluation-educational intervention; innovative educational interventions; interdisciplinary; interprofessional education; mentoring; workforce development/issues; workplace learning

    PMID: 24648365 [PubMed - in process]

publication date

  • January 1, 2013