About the Clinical Effectiveness program at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta
The Clinical Effectiveness program at Children’s uses current published evidence, ongoing quality data, and expert consensus to guide clinical decision making for specific clinical circumstances, based on presenting complaints, specific patient populations, or underlying diagnoses. The goal is to provide clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) to promote optimal patient outcomes, reduce variation among care providers, and minimize resource waste. CPGs are formatted to be easy to use at the bedside, often as an algorithm of a series of decisions in a clinically logical sequence for the setting where they are meant to be applied.
CPGs are developed by teams consisting of multidisciplinary clinicians and usually include clinical decision support personnel and informaticists. Most CPGs are associated with order sets that mirror guideline recommendations, thus making it easier to use the guideline at the point of care. Many CPGs have process and outcome metrics to monitor their impact on patient care. These metrics can be monitored over time to provide front line providers and leaders alike information on gaps in practice and foundation for clinical quality improvement initiatives to close those gaps.
While Children’s goal is to review and revise CPGs when new evidence becomes available, there is no guarantee that the published CPG has been updated. They provide a general framework that can be followed, as appropriate, and are designed to be used for about 80% of the intended population. They are not intended to be used in all circumstances and ultimately, the physician determines the best care plan for each individual patient.