The American College of Radiology® (ACR®) was awarded a grant from the prestigious Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation under its Diagnostic Excellence Initiative. The grant provides for development of a clinical quality measure to improve completion of follow up for evidence based recommendations made for incidental radiology findings. ACR Metrics Committee Chair David Seidenwurm, MD, will serve as principal investigator for this effort.
The Moore Foundation Diagnostic Excellence Initiative aims to reduce harm from erroneous or delayed diagnoses. The Initiative also addresses a need to improve diagnostic performance, reduce costs and redundancy in the diagnostic process, improve health outcomes and save lives.
Closing the Results Follow-Up Loop
Recommendations for follow-up imaging for incidentally detected abnormal imaging results are present in up to 10% of reports. These incidental findings may represent early malignancy or other treatable conditions.
Follow-up imaging is likely to confirm or characterize clinically significant findings. Current compliance for recommended follow-up ranges from 29-77%. Systems often lack rigorous processes to assure patients and providers adhere to them.
This presents an opportunity for improving patient outcomes through early detection of cancer or other treatable conditions and ensuing treatment as appropriate.
Funded by the Moore Foundation’s Diagnostic Excellence Initiative, the initial aim of the “Closing the Loop” measure to be developed is to assess use of a system to ensure recommended follow-up takes place. The measure goal is to improve the number of patients receiving recommended imaging follow-up and subsequently benefiting from earlier cancer detection through systematic tracking and care coordination.
Contact Samantha Shugarman for more information about the ACR Closing the Loop measure project.