Standardized Synoptic Cancer Pathology Reports: So What and Who Cares? A Population Based Survey of 970 Pathologists , Surgeons, and Oncologists.
John Srigley, Sara Lankshear, Marta Yurcan, Tom McGowan, Dimitrios Divaris, Robin Rossi, Jillian Ross, James Brierley, Carol Sawka. Cancer Care Ontario, Toronto, Canada; McMaster Univ., Hamilton, ON, Canada; Univ.of Toronto, ON, Canada
Background: The benefits of standardized synoptic cancer pathology reporting include enhanced completeness and improved consistency in comparison to narrative reports. The purpose of this study was to determine the impact of standardized synoptic pathology reporting on physician satisfaction regarding process (e.g. timeliness, and completeness) and practice (e.g. clinical decision making).
Design: A descriptive, cross sectional design was utilized including 970 clinicians (e.g. pathologists, surgeons, medical and radiation oncologists) across 27 hospitals. The 11 item survey used an established quality indicator framework as a guide to obtain information regarding timeliness, completeness, clarity and usability. Open-ended questions were also employed to obtain qualitative comments. Data collections following the Tailored Design Method as described by Dillman (2007) and incorporated both a secure web-based survey or hard copy/faxed surveys.
Results: 498 surveys were completed representing a 51% overall response rate, and by specialty ranging from 68% (Pathologists), to 39% (Surgeons) with 45% and 55% response rate from Medical Oncologists and Radiation Oncologists respectively. Descriptive statistics reveal that based on a 5 point Likert scale with 1 = synoptic reports as significantly worse than narrative and 5 = synoptic reports as significantly better than narrative reports, the mean satisfaction score was 4.63 indicating that physicians perceive synoptic reports as significantly better than narrative reports. Correlation analysis revealed a positive relationship between respondents' perceptions of overall satisfaction with the level of information provided in synoptic reports and perceptions of the completeness for clinical decision making [r =.750, p = .000], ease of finding information for clinical decision making [r = .663, p = .000] and the report's ability to facilitate a consistent approach to diagnostic and prognostic factors [ r = 717, p = .000]. Dependent t-tests showed a statistically significant difference in the satisfaction scores of pathologists and oncologists [t (169) = 3.044, p = .003]. Content analyses of qualitative comments reveal technology related issues as the most frequently cited factor impacting timeless of report completion.
Conclusions: This study provides evidence of strong physician satisfaction with standardized synoptic cancer pathology reporting as a clinical decision support tool in the diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of cancer patients.
Category: Quality Assurance
Tuesday, March 1, 2011 11:30 AM
Platform Session: Section H 2, Tuesday Morning