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Editor's Note
July 2015

A Simple Approach to Reducing Inappropriate Use of Central Venous Catheters

JAMA Intern Med. 2015;175(7):1234. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2015.1296

Central venous catheters are commonly used in hospitalized patients. Many are not indicated, evidence of benefit is scant, and all put patients at risk for thrombosis and infection. In this issue, McDonald and Lee1 describe a simple intervention—making inpatient teams aware that a patient has a central venous catheter and the probable indication for the catheter—that appears to have resulted in a major reduction in the prevalence of inappropriate use of central venous catheters. While we applaud this effort, additional evidence is needed, as this intervention took place at 1 hospital and there was no concurrent control group. But we hope the study will stimulate additional research, preferably randomized clinical trials, to document the efficacy of interventions to reduce the use of inappropriate central venous catheters.

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