Patient safety tool: Infographic shows when nurses should remove urinary catheters

Toronto-based Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre recently published a medical directive and infographic for nurses on the early removal of urinary catheters from medical ward patients in JAMA Internal Medicine.

The Society of Hospital Medicine and the Canadian Society of Internal Medicine have both identified leaving a urinary catheter in place without indication as one of "Five Things Physicians and Patients Should Question," because delays in removal can lead to catheter-associated urinary tract infections.

According to the authors of the directive, interventions aimed at physicians reduce unnecessary urinary catheter use, but empowering nurses to remove urinary catheters through the use of medical directives remains an underused strategy.

To help empower nurses, Sunnybrook clinicians created the directive and infographic below.

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