Development and Utilization of a Diagnostic Support Tool for Asthma within the Electronic Medical Record.
Rethy, Janine A
Asthma in childhood is a common and costly chronic disease. Quality asthma care can lead to better control of asthma thus decreasing use of health services.[9,10] The gold standard for pediatric asthma diagnosis and management is the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) guidelines for Diagnosis and Management of Asthma which center on precisely establishing the severity of asthma, as this precise classification delineates appropriate therapy. However, navigating these guidelines is a challenge for primary care providers that creates a barrier to providing quality care.[11,14,15] We aim to improve precision in asthma severity classification in the community healthcare setting through the development of an electronic asthma decision support tool (eADST) incorporating NHLBI guidelines embedded within the electronic health record system. We developed an algorithm for the eADST to guide the health care provider to the appropriate classification and subsequent therapy. We engaged our health system’s electronic health record informatics team and together developed and revised the tool. We launched the tool in three academic community clinics and measured precision in asthma classification in the twelve months prior to the availability of the tool and the twelve months following the launch. We found a significant improvement in precision of asthma severity classification following the launch, a necessary first step in improvement of asthma care. The next step will be to evaluate the impact of the tool on asthma outcomes.
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