Choosing Wisely:

Don’t routinely order broad respiratory pathogen panels unless the result will affect patient management.

Rationale and Comments: In place of broad respiratory pathogen panels, use tests that provide immediate diagnosis and potentially expedite management decisions. Consider first using tests of commonly suspected pathogens, which may change according to the location/season. Examples include rapid molecular or point-of-care tests for respiratory syncytial virus, influenza A/B, or group A pharyngitis. Rapid tests may be laboratory-based or point-of-care, depending on operational needs. Broader testing for other respiratory pathogens may be done when the result will affect patient management, such as altering/discontinuing empiric antimicrobial therapy or changing infection control measures.
Sponsoring Organizations:
  • American Society for Clinical Pathology
  • Sources:
  • IDSA guideline
  • Disciplines:
  • Infectious disease
  • References: • Miller JM, Binnicker MJ, Campbell S, Carroll KC, Chapin KC, Gilligan PH, Gonzalez MD, Jerris RC, Kehl SC, Patel R, Pritt BS, Richter SS, Robinson-Dunn B, Schwartzman JD, Snyder JM, Telford S, Theel ES, Thomson RB, Weinstein MP, Yao JD. 2018. A guide to utilization of the microbiology laboratory for diagnosis of infectious diseases: 2018 recommendations by the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) and the American Society for Microbiology (ASM). Clinical Infectious Disease. 31;67(6):e1-e94.

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