New Tool to Curb Inappropriate Antibiotic Usage and Misdiagnosed UTIs in LTC Residents
April 21, 2017 | Aging Services Risk, Quality, & Safety Guidance
Researchers developed the Cooper Urinary Surveillance Tool with an aim to help nurses assess clinical signs and symptoms of urinary tract infection (UTI) in long-term care (LTC) residents. Improving diagnostic accuracy could reduce inappropriate antibiotic treatments and other factors associated with UTIs, according to a study published in the March/April 2017 issue of Annals of Long-Term Care: Clinical Care and Aging. The authors of the study created an evidence-based algorithm to be used along with staff education and "change champions," culminating in a quality improvement project that resulted in a significant reduction in the incidence of both overall and inappropriate UTI diagnoses in LTC residents. Although the McGeer criteria are reliable and have been widely used for infection surveillance for more than 20 years, their diagnostic accuracy has shown to be low.