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Education Calendar - February 2015 (PDF)

Education Calendar - March 2015 (PDF)

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New POLST Alert Appears in CS-Link

A new best-practice alert has been added to CS-Link™ regarding completion of Physician Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment (POLST) forms for patients with Do Not Attempt Resuscitation (DNAR) orders.

When a physician places a DNAR order, a Best Practice Advisory will display indicating that a POLST should be completed for the patient. Once the form is completed, the physician can acknowledge the action, suppressing the alert. However, if the DNAR patient does not have a completed POLST in the system upon discharge, the Best Practice Advisory will display, indicating that POLST should be completed for the patient prior to discharge.

This improvement will streamline recording and communication regarding a physician's DNAR order in the out-of-hospital setting, ensuring that patients' end-of-life wishes outlined in the POLST are honored. The change took effect Feb. 10.

The POLST form is a physician's order that outlines a plan of care reflecting the patient's preferences concerning care at the end of life and the physician's clinical judgment based on a thorough medical evaluation of the patient's condition. The POLST provides default orders in the event a patient becomes seriously ill, and it contains information about the use of CPR, preferred scope of medical interventions and use of artificially administered nutrition.

In emergencies, the orders contained on a POLST form are to be used to direct medical care until further orders can be decided upon and written. The POLST helps patients and their healthcare professionals to discuss and develop plans that reflect patients' preferences concerning end-of-life care, and it conveys those plans to other healthcare professionals, facilities and emergency personnel.

The POLST form is an effective instrument to prevent unwarranted treatments and helps ensure that medically indicated treatments desired by the patient are provided.

To see an illustration of the new advisory, click here. Because the linked PDF is behind the Cedars-Sinai firewall, it is available only on Cedars-Sinai computers.