Can default blood tests waste money and be detrimental to patient health care ?

Should we abandon routine blood tests ?

The practice of ordering routine blood tests for patients attending hospital regardless of clinical need is wasteful and potentially damaging, argue some doctors.

“Ordering the “full house” of full blood count, urea and electrolytes, liver function tests, and C reactive protein might be acting as a psychological comfort blanket for clinicians, masking an over-reliance on investigations or a lack of confidence in clinical judgment.”

“The literature on “too much medicine” has developed over the past three decades and finds its modern home in the Choosing Wisely and overdiagnosis movements, which promulgate the principles of value based healthcare. In Scotland, Catherine Calderwood’s “Realistic Medicine” initiative outlines a strategic framework to reduce unnecessary variation and waste while improving the quality and safety of care.”

Read Should we abandon routine blood tests?, The BMJ blog, April 26, 2017.

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