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5 Critical Care Practices Come Under Scrutiny

 |  By Alexandra Wilson Pecci  
   February 04, 2014

The American Association of Critical-Care Nurses has released a list of five common critical care practices that it says clinicians should reconsider. The practices persist only "because we're covering our butts," insists one nursing leader.

By now you've probably heard of the American Board of Internal Medicine Foundation's Choosing Wisely campaign to reduce unnecessary or non-evidence-based care.

Now the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses has released a list of its own Choosing Wisely guidelines—five common critical care practices that clinicians should reconsider because they might not help patients, and in some cases, might harm them. The AACN worked on the recommendations as part of the Critical Care Societies Collaborative (CCSC), which also includes the American College of Chest Physicians, the American Thoracic Society, and the Society of Critical Care Medicine.

Some of the recommendations should come as no surprise. For instance, one says critical care professionals shouldn't "order diagnostic tests at regular intervals (such as every day), but rather in response to specific clinical questions." Others are more controversial, such as the recommendation that life support shouldn't necessarily be continued for certain patients.


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Alexandra Wilson Pecci is an editor for HealthLeaders.

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