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To evaluate whether incorporating mandatory prior authorization for Clostridioides difficile testing into antimicrobial stewardship pharmacist workflow could reduce testing in patients with alternative etiologies for diarrhea.
Single center, quasi-experimental before-and-after study.
Tertiary-care, academic medical center in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
Adult and pediatric patients admitted between September 11, 2019 and December 10, 2019 were included if they had an order placed for 1 of the following: (1) C. difficile enzyme immunoassay (EIA) in patients hospitalized >72 hours and received laxatives, oral contrast, or initiated tube feeds within the prior 48 hours, (2) repeat molecular multiplex gastrointestinal pathogen panel (GIPAN) testing, or (3) GIPAN testing in patients hospitalized >72 hours.
A best-practice alert prompting prior authorization by the antimicrobial stewardship program (ASP) for EIA or GIPAN testing was implemented. Approval required the provider to page the ASP pharmacist and discuss rationale for testing. The provider could not proceed with the order if ASP approval was not obtained.
An average of 2.5 requests per day were received over the 3-month intervention period. The weekly rate of EIA and GIPAN orders per 1,000 patient days decreased significantly from 6.05 ± 0.94 to 4.87 ± 0.78 (IRR, 0.72; 95% CI, 0.56–0.93; P = .010) and from 1.72 ± 0.37 to 0.89 ± 0.29 (IRR, 0.53; 95% CI, 0.37–0.77; P = .001), respectively.
We identified an efficient, effective C. difficile and GIPAN diagnostic stewardship approval model.
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