Development and implementation of a comprehensive heparin-induced thrombocytopenia recognition and management protocol.

Link to article at PubMed

Development and implementation of a comprehensive heparin-induced thrombocytopenia recognition and management protocol.

Am J Health Syst Pharm. 2012 Feb 1;69(3):241-8

Authors: Smythe MA, Mehta TP, Koerber JM, Forsyth LL, Sykes E, Corbets LR, Melendy SM, Parikh R

Abstract
Purpose A quality initiative to improve the management of heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (HIT) at an academic medical center, including the development of guidelines on the use of direct thrombin inhibitors (DTIs), is described. Summary In keeping with the Joint Commission's National Patient Safety Goal (NPSG) for anticoagulant therapy (goal 03.05.01), a multidisciplinary working group conducted a needs assessment to identify areas for improvement in the center's HIT management practices, particularly the use of DTI therapy (an issue not specifically addressed by NPSG 03.05.01). The resulting action steps included (1) the implementation of a detailed protocol for the recognition and management of HIT, as well as guidelines on the use of the DTIs argatroban and lepirudin, (2) more efficient use and optimized documentation of initial and confirmatory tests in the electronic medical record (EMR), and (3) the education of pharmacists, nurses, and physicians on the use of the HIT protocol, with initial and ongoing case-based competency testing of pharmacy staff. Early postimplementation experience indicated that the protocol and associated activities have resulted in improved DTI prescribing and dosing, HIT documentation, and patient education practices while expanding pharmacists' involvement in ensuring optimal, cost-effective management of patients with HIT. Conclusion In one institution, an HIT working group extended the scope of NPSG 03.05.01 to include the parenteral DTIs. The implementation of the HIT protocol has resulted in greater compliance with appropriate DTI dosing and improved EMR documentation of HIT.

PMID: 22261947 [PubMed - in process]

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