Date of Award

Summer 5-6-2018

Document Type

DNP Project

Project Team Faculty Member

Rebecca Collier DNP, CRNA

Project Team Faculty Member

Mary Zerlan DNP, CRNA

Project Team Faculty Member

Andy Griffin Phd, CRNA


naloxone protocol, naloxone in hospital use, inpatient naloxone protocol, naloxone administration



A tertiary care facility in central Illinois noted an increase in inpatient opioid-related adverse events, including acute opioid withdrawal syndrome due to a higher than a necessary dose of naloxone. The patient required intubation with a prolonged intensive care unit stay. A naloxone administration protocol encouraging cautious titration of naloxone could potentially decrease, if not entirely avoid similar events. When a patient exhibits opioid overdose symptoms, airway management, hemodynamic support, and due appreciation of the elimination half-life of naloxone become vital in preventing potentially tragic outcomes. This quality improvement project was non-experimental and involved the design and introduction of an adult naloxone administration protocol to guide healthcare providers. This protocol included clear and objective endpoints for naloxone dosing and interventions and involved the Pasero Opioid Sedation Scale which was already in use at the host facility for all patients receiving opioid therapy. Stakeholder feedback after presentation of the protocol served as the measure of project evaluation. The adult naloxone administration protocol could be immediately adopted to help reduce the adverse effects of opioid overdose. A follow-up quality improvement study after the implementation of the protocol was recommended.

Keywords: Naloxone protocol, Naloxone in hospital use, Inpatient naloxone protocol, Naloxone administration. Naloxone DNP, Naloxone administration protocol.

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