CE Feature: Appropriate Use of Opioids in Managing Chronic Pain.”

Unintentional death related to prescription opioids has been identified as a public health crisis, owing in part to such factors as insufficient professional training and medication overprescription, misuse, and diversion. The authors discuss current best practices for prescribing opioids for chronic pain, emphasizing patient assessment and essential patient teaching points regarding safe medication use, storage, and disposal.

CE Feature: “Moral Distress: A Catalyst in Building Moral Resilience.”

Moral distress is a pervasive problem in nursing: an inability to act in alignment with one’s moral values is detrimental not only to the nurse’s well-being but also to patient care and clinical practice as a whole. Moral distress has typically been characterized in terms of powerlessness and victimization. This article offers an alternate view: ethically complex situations and experiences of moral distress can become opportunities for growth, empowerment, and increased moral resilience.

Diabetes Under Control: “Prediabetes: What Nurses Need to Know.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that approximately one in three American adults meet the criteria for “prediabetes,” in which blood glucose levels are higher than normal but not high enough for a type 2 diabetes diagnosis. This article provides an overview of prediabetes criteria and outlines the evidence regarding interventions that can prevent or delay progression to type 2 diabetes.

Teaching for Practice: “Strategies for Successful Clinical Teaching.”

This article is one in a series on the roles of adjunct clinical faculty and preceptors, who teach nursing students and new graduates to apply knowledge in clinical settings. Emphasizing the importance of creating a positive learning environment, the authors offer strategies for clinical teaching.

There’s much more in our July issue, including an AJN Reports that examines the 21st Century Cures Act currently awaiting approval in the U.S. Senate, and a Policy and Politics overview of Donald Trump’s health care platform, so click here to browse the table of contents and explore the issue on our Web site.

A note on the cover: On this month’s cover is Moonrise Over the Sandias (2015) by Charles Kaiman, a painter and a psychiatric nurse at the New Mexico Veterans Affairs Health Care System in Albuquerque. Kaiman says the painting technique he uses invokes a meditative approach that helps him cope with the stresses of his full-time job. He has been a nurse for 38 years.

Kaiman’s technique requires him to carefully modulate the colors he uses in order to precisely reflect what he sees. “This activity is almost a meditation because it involves fully clearing my mind of all the ‘baggage’ of the day,” he explains. “I believe this type of painting has allowed me to continue in nursing longer than I might have without it.” For more of Kaiman’s work, visit www.charleskaimanpainter.com and see this month’s Art of Nursing.