Researchers at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, Baltimore, used two relatively simple tactics to significantly reduce the number of unnecessary blood tests to assess symptoms of heart attack and chest pain, and to achieve a large decrease in patient charges.
The team provided information about testing guidelines and made changes to the computerized physician order entry system at the medical center, part of the Johns Hopkins Health System. The guidelines call for more limited use of blood tests for cardiac biomarkers. A year after implementation, the guidelines saved the medical center an estimated $1.25 million in laboratory charges.
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