unnecessary tests

Latest Headlines

Latest Headlines

There's no good evidence tying screening to reduced mortality

It seems like basic common sense: Encourage cancer screenings, diagnose and treat the disease early, save lives. It turns out the "save lives" part of that equation is a lot harder to support, according to an article in  BMJ.

Culture shift, patient education needed to stop unnecessary tests

When residents are confronted by patients requesting unnecessary tests, they order the tests anyway, according to a study published in  JAMA Internal Medicine.  For the study, undercover instructors posed as patients requesting the tests. Not only did the 60 residents involved in the study order the tests the first time, but they did so again months later after receiving in-person coaching from instructors or educational materials to read. 

Fear of overtesting and malpractice often drives diagnostic errors

One reason for the widespread problem of diagnostic errors is the pressure clinicians are under to avoid unnecessary tests and control healthcare costs, according to a leading healthcare expert who was one of the reviewers of the recent Institute of Medicine report that revealed most people will experience a misdiagnosis at some point in their lives.

3 ways health leaders can help doctors avoid waste

To create systems that support doctors and allow them to do the best possible job, healthcare leaders should keep three key principles in mind, according to a Health Affairs blog post.

Education, outreach reduce unnecessary lab tests

Providers who better understand the specific uses of different kinds of laboratory tests order fewer unnecessary tests and provide better patient care,  Medscape Medical News  reported from the American Society for Clinical Pathology conference.

CPOE alerts help to reduce unnecessary CT scans

Computerized physician order entry with decision-support alerts can help to curb unnecessary CT scans, according to new research published this week in  JAMA Internal Medicine.

Cost reminders via CPOE lead to fewer test orders

Displaying the cost of a test via computerized provider order entry systems prompted a 9 percent reduction in the number of tests ordered, according to a study published in  JAMA Internal Medicine.

CDS alerts reduce unnecessary tests for heart failure

Alerts generated to advise physicians that a test on heart failure patients already had been performed helped Lehigh Valley Health Network in Pennsylvania reduce unnecessary testing by 21 percent and save approximately $92,000 a year.

Heavy physician workload hurts patients

Attending physicians with excess patient encounters said they were more likely to order unnecessary tests, have poorer patient satisfaction and see worse patient outcomes.

Repeat testing could up costs, trigger more tests

Despite national efforts to curb unnecessary testing, half of older Medicare patients had a repeat heart, lung, stomach or bladder test within three years of an initial test.