Choosing Wisely Campaign marks first anniversary

Campaign aims to reduce unnecessary medical treatments and tests

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The Northwest Territories Health and Social Services Authority celebrated the first anniversary of its Choosing Wisely Northwest Territories campaign on Friday.

Meaghan Richens/NNSL photo
Pooja Chugh, regional coordinator for the Choosing Wisely NWT campaign, celebrated the campaign’s first anniversary by giving out cake at an information booth in the YK Centre on Friday.

The NWT campaign is part of a national initiative that aims to help doctors and patients talk about unnecessary tests and treatments.

It targets commonly ordered but not always necessary tests and treatments like antibiotics for viral illnesses, lower back imaging for uncomplicated back pain and unnecessary lab testing.

According to the territorial health authority, the campaign has been effective.

In March 2018,  the campaign implemented a new requisition to require an appropriate red flag to prompt lumbar or thoracic X-rays. The new rule along with other clinical resources for low back pain management saw inappropriate imaging requests reduced by 46.7% and improperly explained requests reduced by 50% within six months.

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