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When it comes to tests, more is not always better

I recently came across a news article discussing a downward trend in the numbers of tests, procedures and, sometimes, even elective surgeries. The article, while from a Canadian news paper, certainly is of interest to U.S. care providers (as the movement described originated from there).

The article (When it comes to tests, more is not always better) highlights a deliberate effort from many level of health care administration to try to eliminate redundant testings and other procedures deemed "unnecessary." Some interesting statistics:

- The number of laboratory tests ordered for ER patients is down 31 per cent since September, 2014.

- The number of lab tests ordered in the pre-operative clinic has dropped 38 per cent since February, 2015.

- The number of mobile chest X-rays done in the intensive care unit has fallen 12 per cent since January, 2015.

Another quote I found interesting:

A lot of tests are done by routine, or because we've always done them, not because they're helpful,” says Dr. Donna McRitchie.

Is this a trend you have noticed yourself in your day-to-day work as nurses? Or perhaps you have noticed an increase, in some cases? Do you believe this is something worth actively promoting?

Dany

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