Are Nurse-Driven Clostridium difficile Protocols Effective?

Gonzalo Bearman, MD, MPH, professor of medicine, and hospital epidemiologist, Department of Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases, Virginia Commonwealth University, examines the importance of nurse-driven Clostridium difficile protocols.

Gonzalo Bearman, MD, MPH, professor of medicine, and hospital epidemiologist, Department of Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases, Virginia Commonwealth University, examines the importance of nurse-driven Clostridium difficile protocols.

Interview Transcript (slightly modified for readability)

“Nurse-driven C. difficile protocols are really [an] unresolved issue in terms of whether we should or should not do them. We actually do them in my home institution.

The theory is that nurses, because they’re by the patients more than anyone else really, are the first to recognize a diarrheal syndrome. They should be given the latitude and freedom to order C. difficile tests within certain parameters to make an early diagnosis. By making an early diagnosis it leads to earlier treatment, earlier isolation, and potentially [could] decrease the risk of transmission to other patients.”