Scratch trial: An initiative to reduce excess use of high-flow nasal cannula

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7 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVES: We aimed to reduce unnecessary use of high-flow nasal cannula (HFNC) at lower flow rates through the implementation of a standard daily trial off HFNC at a medium-sized academic center. METHODS: We used an interprofessional quality improvement collaboration to develop and implement interventions to reduce HFNC waste in children aged 1 month to 24 months with bronchiolitis who were admitted to the inpatient ward or ICU. Key interventions included development and implementation of the Simple Cannula/Room Air Trial for Children (SCRATCH Trial), a standard trial off HFNC for eligible infants. Process measures were selected as metrics of use of the newly developed trial. The primary outcome measure was hours of treatment with ≤8 L per minute (LPM) of HFNC. Additional outcome measures included total hours of treatment with HFNC and length of stay. RESULTS: A total of 271 patients were included in this study, 131 in the preimplementation group and 140 in the postimplementation group. The mean hours of treatment below our a priori determined waste line (≤8 LPM of HFNC) decreased from 36.3 to 16.8 hours after SCRATCH Trial implementation, and mean length of stay decreased from 4.1 to 3.0 days. CONCLUSIONS: The SCRATCH Trial was successfully implemented across hospital units, with a significant reduction in hours on ≤8 LPMof flow. Rapid discontinuation of HFNC appears feasible and may be associated with a shorter length of stay.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)319-326
Number of pages8
JournalHospital pediatrics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Pediatrics


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