A new measurement tool called the computerized clinical vignette can help clinicians and policymakers assess and improve the quality of physician practice while potentially reducing costs, according to a study led by a researcher at the San Francisco VA Medical Center (SFVAMC).
The vignette -- which presents a simulated patient visit to the doctor via computer -- is an accurate, inexpensive, and efficient way to measure how well physicians handle their clinical practice, the study concludes. Research findings are published in the November 16 issue of Annals of Internal Medicine. "As we investigate the quality of clinical practice, we know theres a tremendous need for improvement," says study leader John W. Peabody, MD, PhD, a staff physician at SFVAMC and an associate professor of epidemiology, biostatistics, and medicine at the University of California, San Francisco.
In order to improve care and control costs, he adds, "We need to give physicians a very precise estimate of where their strengths and weaknesses are. But in medicine, we dont get a lot of feedback. And in order to change that, we need a new measurement method."
Corinna Kaarlela | EurekAlert!
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