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Two new resources can help consumers and clinicians prevent dangerous blood clots

Two new guides to help consumers and clinicians prevent and treat deep vein thrombosis have been released by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). AHRQ's consumer booklet, Your Guide to Preventing and Treating Blood Clots, is a 12-page easy-to-read resource that helps both patients and their families identify the causes and symptoms of dangerous blood clots, learn tips on how to prevent them, and know what to expect during treatment.

The clinician guide, Preventing Hospital-Acquired Venous Thromboembolism: A Guide for Effective Quality Improvement, is a comprehensive tool to help hospitals and clinicians implement processes to prevent dangerous blood clots. The 60-page guide details how to start, implement, evaluate, and sustain a quality improvement strategy. It includes case studies, as well as examples of forms that clinicians in the field can use.

The AHRQ guides were developed from toolkits originally created by experts funded through AHRQ's Partnerships in Implementing Patient Safety grant program (http://www.ahrq.gov/qual/pips/). 

The consumer guide, Your Guide to Preventing and Treating Blood Clots, is available in both English (Publication No. 08-0058-A, http://www.ahrq.gov/consumer/bloodclots.htm) and Spanish (Publication No. 08-0058-B, http://www.ahrq.gov/consumer/spblclots.htm).

The clinician guide, Preventing Hospital-Acquired Venous Thromboembolism: A Guide for Effective Quality Improvement (Publication No. 08-0075) is available at http://www.ahrq.gov/qual/vtguide/. Copies are also available from the AHRQ Publications Clearinghouse.

Editor's Note: Treatment for blood clots often includes blood thinning medications such as Coumadin® (generic name: warfarin). AHRQ recently published Your Guide to Coumadin®/Warfarin Therapy (Publication No. 08-0028-A) to help these patients better understand their treatment. This guide also originated from an AHRQ-funded patient safety project. It is available at http://www.ahrq.gov/consumer/coumadin.htm and from the AHRQ Publications Clearinghouse.

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