approved acronyms

thomas7331

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There isn't any single official list of approved acronyms, that I know of. The JCAHO, which regulates hospitals, requires that facilities "must take reasonable approaches to standardizing abbreviations, acronyms, and symbols" and publishes a list of 'forbidden' abbreviations which are know to potentially cause errors (see: JCAHO "Forbidden" Abbreviations), but it leaves it up to each organization to develop their own approved list. I'm not aware of any other regulatory body that imposes this requirement for organizations outside of those overseen by the JCAHO, however.
 

csperoni

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Agree with Thomas. My large healthcare organization has a document of unacceptable abbreviations for medical documentation. It might be just the JCAHO list on our letterhead, or they may have added others. I am not aware of a list of "approved" abbreviations. Particularly for office (not hospital) documentation, I have seen abbreviations all the time, and could vary a lot by specialty. The surgical consents for example do not use abbreviations, but in the note a gynecologist might use TAH for total abdominal hysterectomy, but a different specialty might use TAH in a different context. My very unofficial opinion is that as long as it is not on the unacceptable list, and the meaning is clear in context, then I would have no issue with abbreviations.
 
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