Inpatient Care, Quality and Population Health

C. Difficile Testing Reminders for Medical Staff

Reducing hospital-onset C. difficile is an important focus of our infection prevention efforts. Over the past several years, a multidisciplinary team has developed and implemented action plans encompassing hand hygiene, contact precautions, appropriate use of antibiotics (notably fluoroquinolones), and testing.

That last piece—testing—warrants some reminders. Please remember the key points below, and refer to the Clostridioides difficile Testing Guidance for more information on clinical criteria for testing and the testing process.

  1. Do not order C. difficile testing unless the patient is having persistent diarrhea and meets the clinical criteria outlined in the testing guidance document.
  2. If the patient is having diarrhea and meets the other criteria, timely testing is critical. Our goal is to diagnose community-onset C. difficile within 72 hours of admission.

Questions? Contact Hillary Cohen, MD, VP, Medical Affairs, or Ashwin Jathavedam, MD, Chief, Infectious Disease, or the Infection Prevention team with any questions.