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Managing Pain Through Collaboration

Dr. Francisco Martinez-Wittinghan has been a part of Integrating Patient Reported Outcomes for Patient-Centered Pain Care since October 2021.

Managing Pain

Dr. Francisco Martinez-Wittinghan wants to help patients suffering with chronic pain. As medical director of UF Health Family Medicine – Augustine Oaks, he has been a part of Integrating Patient Reported Outcomes for Patient-Centered Pain Care, or IPRO, a patient-centered research project since October 2021. The goal of the project is to help patients proactively manage their pain symptoms. The project team works with focus groups involving patients and providers to help collect data and provide valuable feedback for the treatment of future patients.

According to a published summary of the research, about 30% of Americans experience chronic pain. Because the majority of those patients turn to their primary care providers for relief, the researchers are looking for ways to assist these physicians and add patient input into the process.

An important part of the research project is to help implement an online app accessible by both patients and providers. Through the app, patients complete a health questionnaire prior to their visit with their health care provider. Questionnaire responses are shared with the provider, who can work with the patient on creating a treatment plan. The idea is that both parties provide information to help facilitate the next steps in planning and treatment.

Patients and providers also evaluate the app to make sure the right questions are being asked, information is worded clearly and that collected data is adequate in helping to effectively plan the next steps.

Dr. Martinez-Wittinghan hopes this research can show people the importance of having more patient input into treatments. Shared decision making between both patient and provider is important. It encourages the patient to be more engaged in their health decisions and overall wellness.

The project team is led by Chris Harle, PhD; Ramzi Salloum, PhD; Lori Bilello, PhD; Cara McDonnell, MPH; and Brianna Nordelo, MPH. Visit: to learn more about this research study.

Dr. Martinez-Wittnghan is a family medicine, or primary care provider specializing in management of diabetes, hypertension and preventive care. Visit or call 904-633-0210 today to schedule an appointment.

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