Pennsylvania Opioid Surgical Stewardship Enterprise (POSSE)

POSSE (Pennsylvania Opioid Surgical Stewardship Enterprise) is a quality improvement program funded by the AmerisourceBergen Foundation. The program launched in September of 2018 and focuses on preventing chronic opioid use among post-surgical patients. It employs a collaborative design that engages both surgical patients and surgical provider teams, an approach that leverages the expertise of both the Clinical Improvement as well as the Population Health teams at HCIF. The patient-centered domain engages surgical patients in developing and disseminating health literate patient educational materials about pain management and prevention of opioid use disorder. The provider-centered domain collaborates with surgeons and surgical teams to implement strategies that prevent opioid use disorder while effectively managing post-operative pain.

Leadership and Partnerships

The POSSE program is guided by the POSSE Steering Committee. Committee membership consists of HCIF program staff and a multidisciplinary team of clinical and quality improvement champions from three participating health systems: Jefferson Health, Main Line Health, and Temple Health. POSSE partners with the Pennsylvania National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (NSQIP) Consortium, a membership collaborative that shares data and best practices, initiates targeted quality improvement programs, and measures performance with the goal of enhancing surgical patient outcomes.


Current Program Activities

The POSSE program aims to reduce chronic opioid use by improving practices along each step of the continuum of surgical care, from pre-operative screening and risk assessment to post-operative patient education and pain management. Activities to date include:


  • Development of patient education video and print materials
  • Development of a surgical provider education toolkit
  • Webinar series on rotating topics and best practices
  • Team-specific quality improvement coaching calls
  • Custom opioid-specific measurement using the NSQIP registry
  • Development of procedure-specific prescribing guidelines

Click the above infographic to learn more about the POSSE program