what we do
The overutilization of opioids by clinicians and hospitals is one of the major drivers of the nation’s opioid epidemic. In addition to the long-term risks of dependence and addiction associated with opioid use and prescription, the evidence is clear that opioids are ineffective for management of many painful conditions and may, in some cases, complicate pain management.
The misconception that opioids are the gold-standard for pain management is outdated and dangerous. By utilizing multimodal analgesia with alternatives to opioids (ALTO), clinicians can treat pain more effectively while simultaneously reducing the risks associated with opioid exposure. Dr. Stader and his team have developed and implemented ALTO programs in emergency departments and hospitals across the nation. Dr. Stader and Rachael Duncan, PharmD founded the nation’s second emergency department ALTO program, published the first academic study showing the effectiveness of emergency department ALTO programs and created the nation’s first guidelines promoting ALTO as standard of emergency department care. SOC’s clinicians have been leaders in efforts to promote use of multimodal analgesia and ALTO programs for other medical specialties, crafting pain management guidelines for hospitalists, obstetrician-gynecologists, surgeons, anesthesiologists and dentists, with guidelines for other specialties currently under development. The consultants at SOC have trained more than one hundred hospitals and thousands of clinicians across the country. In addition, Dr. Stader has been instrumental in lobbying for federal law to help fund ALTO. SOC is dedicated to helping hospital systems, physician groups and health departments develop and implement effective, evidence-based programs to improve pain management and decrease opioid use.
Policies, Guidelines & Other Writing
CHA: 2019 Hospital Overdose Education & Naloxone Distribution Guidelines
News & Media Coverage
We are medical professionals striving to leave a positive impact on our community and our country
DON STADER - FOUNDER & PRESIDENT
Don Stader, MD FACEP is an emergency physician, opioid expert, film producer & innovator. Don works at Swedish Medical Center in Englewood, CO where he serves as the section chair of emergency medicine and associate ED medical director. Don holds a medical degree with honors from Baylor College of Medicine and attended emergency medicine residency at Carolinas Medical Center. He is the Past President of the Colorado chapter of the American College of Emergency Physicians (COACEP) and former President of the Emergency Medicine Resident's Association (EMRA). He is the founder and past chair of Colorado ACEP's Opioid Task Force, the Editor-in-Chief of COACEP's 2017 Opioid Prescribing & Treatment Guidelines and the leader of CO's CURE, an effort to create multidisciplinary opioid prescribing and treatment guidelines for the state of Colorado. Don is the Senior Pain Management & Opioid Policy Physician Adviser for the Colorado Hospital Association and serves on multiple national and local committees addressing the opioid epidemic in Colorado and across the nation. He is the founder and president of Stader Opioid Consulting, a company that provides opioid and ALTO related education, policy and quality improvement services to hospitals, government organizations and physician groups. He is a well known national lecturer on the opioid epidemic, emergency department pain control, opioid use disorders and harm reduction.
In addition to medicine, he works as a film producer & creative. He served as the Editor-in-Chief of ACEP's 50th Anniversary Book Bring EM' ALL: Chaos. Care. Stories from Medicine's Front Lines. He was the creative force behind the Emmy winning documentary 24|7|365 - The Evolution of Emergency Medicine. His current film Palliative has won the audience award for short documentary at the Denver Film Festival and is currently touring the film festival circuit. He is the founder and chair emeritus of the nonprofit, The Emergency Medical Minute which provides free online emergency medical education via podcasts and video. He lives with his wife Andi and their three daughters Josiphine, Audrey & Morgan in Golden, Colorado.
Rachael Duncan, PharmD BCPS BCCCP is a critical care & ED pharmacist at Swedish Medical Center (SMC) in Colorado. She earned her PharmD from Ohio Northern University and completed critical care residency at Duke. She is the editor of multiple ALTO guidelines, championed the nations’ 2nd ED ALTO program at SMC and published the first peer reviewed paper on ED ALTO. She was a leading member of the Colorado ALTO project that implemented ALTO in the majority of Colorado EDs, is a national lecturer on analgesia and opioids and assisted in founding ALTO programs across the US. As a consultant, she continues to be a passionate advocate for safer analgesia and opioid stewardship. She lives in Salida, Colorado with her husband and son, “the Charlies.”
Ryan Tsipis - Project Manager
Ryan graduated from Virginia Tech in 2012 with a BS in Human Development and Psychology and played on the varsity lacrosse team. She completed a postgraduate Project Management Certificate at Georgetown University in 2016. Ryan is a May 2020 candidate for a Master of Public Health degree at the Colorado School of Public Health with a focus in Community and Behavioral Health. Along with graduate school, Ryan works part-time as a Data Assistant at Water For People, an international water and sanitation non-profit organization. Outside of work and school, Ryan enjoys being an indoor cycle instructor at the Denver Athletic Club and being outdoors with her husband, Nick, and dog, Gladstone.
Nathan Novotny - Project Manager
Nate graduated from the University of Colorado Denver where he earned a BS in Biology and a BA in English with an emphasis on Film. He will be attending Tulane University School of Medicine as a member of the class of 2024 where he plans to also pursue a MPH in Global Community Health and Behavioral Sciences. In addition to his work with SOC, he is also the Executive Director of Emergency Medical Minute, a non-profit, medical education organization based in Denver. In his free time, he competes in powerlifting and enjoys film, literature and discovering new music. Nate currently lives with his long-time girlfriend, Katy, and their dog, Scout.