Red blood cell transfusion: Impact of an education program and a clinical guideline on transfusion practice.
J Hosp Med. 2014 Jul 15;
Authors: Corwin HL, Theus JW, Cargile CS, Lang NP
BACKGROUND: Red blood cell (RBC) transfusion guidelines have been developed by professional societies. These guidelines recommend a restrictive RBC transfusion practice for most clinical populations. Despite the consistency of guidelines and limited evidence for RBC transfusion efficacy, there is variability in RBC transfusion practice.
METHODS: A program was initiated in a tertiary medical center to align RBC transfusion practice with best-practice RBC transfusion guidelines. The program included an educational program, followed after 6 months by RBC transfusion decision support that included the approval of a best-practice RBC transfusion guideline by the hospital medical board and an RBC transfusion order form that included the guideline recommendations. RBC transfusion practice was followed over an 18-month period and compared with transfusion practice over the prior 18 months. The primary outcome variables were adult inpatient RBC units transfused, RBC units per admission, and RBC units per 100 patient-days.
RESULTS: The mean RBC units transfused decreased with initiation of each component of the program: from 923 ± 68 units to 852 ± 40 (P = 0.025) with education and further to 690 ± 52 (P < 0.0001) with the RBC transfusion decision support. Similarly, RBC transfusions per 100 patient-days fell from 10.56 ± 0.80 to 9.69 ± 0.49 (P = 0.02) and to 7.68 ± 0.63 (P = 0.0001) during the 3 time periods.
CONCLUSION: An education program coupled with institutional adoption of a best-practice RBC transfusion guideline and RBC transfusion order set resulted in a reduction in total RBC units transfused. Journal of Hospital Medicine 2014. © 2014 Society of Hospital Medicine.
PMID: 25044275 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]