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CPSI Share                                                  
6/6/2012 6:00 PM

​​​Most hospitalized patients are at risk for venous thromboembolism (VTE), and that risk may persist even after discharge.  VTE comprises both deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE); it is one of the most common and costly but preventable complications of hospitalization.

Safer Healthcare Now! has updated resources available to prevent VTE in hospitalized adult patients, using strategies that increase the use of evidence-based thromboprophylaxis. The updated Getting Started Kit (GSK) promotes prophylaxis use for most adult patient groups in acute care and includes new oral anticoagulants for hip and knee arthroplasty patients. The GSK provides more examples of tools to assist in the implementation of VTE prophylaxis, including order sets, pocket cards and a one-page reference guide. The GSK also includes a change package for teams new to implementing a VTE program and links to a number of additional resources and useful websites. 

“The Getting Started Kit is a valuable resource for preventing VTE that will not only help organizations meet accreditation standards for VTE, but also support their quality improvement initiatives,” says Artemis Diamantouros, National Coordinator for the Safer Healthcare Now! VTE intervention. “The tools in the GSK are readily available and can be easily adapted for your use.”

The updated GSK outlines measures that are useful as part of an audit and feedback strategy. New measures focus on prescribing the appropriate prophylaxis for each patient group and on the use of order sets.  A new audit tool is under development, using the Safer Healthcare Now! Patient Safety Metrics online measurement system to help healthcare organizations capture and report data.

A National Call with Safer Healthcare Now! VTE Intervention Lead, Dr. Bill Geerts, was held on May 23, 2012 to discuss the new Getting Started Kit, present research in VTE prophylaxis implementation and outline recent literature and guidelines.  To access a recording of the National Call, click here.

Dr. Geerts and Artemis Diamantouros provide support to healthcare organizations implementing a VTE program, through presentations, site visits, teleconferences and webinars. For more information, send an email to:

The Safer Healthcare Now! VTE Getting Started Kit, One-Pager and Pocket Card are available in English and French and can be downloaded, at no charge.  Visit for more information on the VTE intervention and click on the links to download the tools.