No, we are not proposing to shut down of our national broadcaster. However, we need to look at the use of the Complete Blood Count (CBC) as a part of screening or a Periodic Health Review.
The OCFP (Ontario College of Family Physicians) has circulated as part of their Tools for Practice a summary about CBC screening cleverly called “CBC (Confusing Broad Check) for Screening?". We get to the main point of the summary below:
Clinical Question: What is the evidence for screening with a CBC (Complete Blood Count) in asymptomatic, non-pregnant adults?
Bottom Line: CBC or its components should NOT be ordered for screening asymptomatic non-pregnant adults as it does not reduce mortality. When CBC is tested routinely without cause, up to 11% are abnormal but <1% require management change. It is unclear which patients benefit and serious disease is virtually never found.
The web link, found in the Quick Links section of this newsletter, contains a more detailed review of the evidence.
Our committee is looking at a simple QI exercise that we would apply to our own practices with the aim of reducing the ordering of “routine CBC’s”. Stay tuned for more info!