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CPS encourages physicians to “choose wisely” when treating children and youth

Nov 30, 2016

OTTAWA – The Canadian Paediatric Society (CPS) today released a list of specific tests, treatments and procedures that are commonly ordered but not always necessary as part of Choosing Wisely Canada. The list identifies five targeted, evidence-based recommendations that can support conversations between patients and clinicians about what care is really necessary.

The CPS list makes the following five recommendations:

  • Don’t routinely use acid blockers or motility agents for the treatment of gastroesophageal reflux in infants.
  • Don’t perform screening panels (IgE tests) for food allergies without previous consideration of the pertinent medical history.
  • Don’t administer psychostimulant medications to preschool children with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), but offer parent-administered behavioural therapy.
  • Don’t routinely do a throat swab when children present with a sore throat if they have a cough, rhinitis, or hoarseness as they almost certainly have viral pharyngitis.
  • Don’t recommend the use of cough and cold remedies in children under six years of age.

 “As health professionals, we can help improve care by talking with patients about what procedures are really necessary and beneficial to their health,” said Dr. Isabelle Chevalier, member of the CPS Board of Directors and project lead. “Our recommendations are intended to help patients and clinicians start important conversations about treatment options and make wise choices about their health.”

The CPS’s Choosing Wisely Canada list was developed after months of careful consideration and review, using the most current evidence about management and treatment options. CPS consulted experts from its expert committees and specialty sections about items they felt should be included in the campaign. Current CPS position statements were also considered during list development.

“Conversations about what care patients truly need is a shared responsibility among all members of the health care team,” said Wendy Levinson, MD OC, Chair and Co-Founder of Choosing Wisely Canada. “The CPS’s Choosing Wisely Canada list will help paediatricians across the country engage their patients in a dialogue about what care is best for them, and what we can do to reduce waste and overuse in our health care system.”

With the release of these new lists, the campaign will have covered more than 175 tests and treatments that the medical professional society partners say are overused and inappropriate, and that clinicians and patients should discuss.

To learn more about Choosing Wisely Canada and to view the complete lists and additional detail about the recommendations and evidence supporting them, visit




About the Canadian Paediatric Society

The Canadian Paediatric Society is a national advocacy association that promotes the health needs of children and youth. Founded in 1922, the CPS represents more than 3,300 paediatricians, paediatric subspecialists and other child health professionals across Canada.

Last updated: Nov 30, 2016

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