Nearly 700 individuals responded to the “Closing the Results Follow-Up Stakeholder Survey” that will guide the work of an American College of Radiology® (ACR®) technical expert panel (TEP) working on a Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation Diagnostic Excellence Initiative project. The TEP is developing quality measures to improve adherence to evidence-based follow-up recommendations for incidental findings. The survey responses also support the development of a care coordination white paper — a collaboration between the ACR and the American College of Emergency Physicians — on the follow-up of incidental imaging findings in the emergency department setting.
Completed stakeholder surveys included submissions from radiologists (247 respondents), referring clinicians (199 respondents — 73% with an emergency medicine specialty), other healthcare professionals (128 respondents) and patients (77 respondents).
Approximately two in ten referring clinicians indicate that they frequently encounter incidental findings follow-up recommendations, and four in ten say they see incidental findings recommendations in about half of the cases. However, one-quarter of the radiology survey respondents indicate that their practice or organization tracks whether recommended follow-up occurs.
The majority of patients indicate they completely agree that, after their most recent imaging exam, they clearly understood if an additional follow-up imaging test or procedure was recommended (56 respondents) and the next steps as a result of the imaging exam (49 respondents).
“The projects supported by the survey results present tremendous opportunities to improve the delivery of evidence-based radiologist-recommended follow-up care,” emphasizes Nadja Kadom, MD, director of pediatric neuroradiology and of quality in the radiology department at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, and co-chair of the Closing the Results Follow-Up Loop measure development TEP. “On behalf of the TEP, our sincere thank you to all of the healthcare organizations that supported the survey distribution and to the individuals who took the time to contribute their opinions.”
More information about the ACR Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation Diagnostic Excellence Initiative project, including the invitation for current GRID users and others to serve as measure testers by being the first to report data on the new quality measures as soon as they become available, can be found on acr.org.