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Performance improvement program helps doctors better manage depression, reports journal of psychiatric practice
Date:7/18/2014

A performance improvement initiative for physicians can significantly increase their use of evidence-based practices in screening for and treating depression, in the July Journal of Psychiatric Practice. The journal is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part of Wolters Kluwer Health.

Led by Dr Michael E. Thase of the University of Pennsylvania Medical School, the researchers evaluated a performance improvement continuing medical education (PI CME) program to increase physicians' use of practices that have been shown to improve diagnosis and care for depression. The three-stage PI CME initiative, developed by Med-IQ in Baltimore, was based on an American Medical Association model for providing CME.

Three-Step Program Provides Feedback on Depression Care

The process started with a review of 50 patients for each participating doctor. The initial review step assessed the physicians' consistency with a set of evidence-based performance measures, including comparison with the performance of other participants.

Based on this feedback, each physician developed a personal plan to improve patient care. The plans were to be implemented over a three-month period, during which time the clinicians received educational and support materials. After three months, participants underwent a repeat review to assess changes in performance. The physicians could earn CME credits for completing each step of the program.

Four hundred ninety-two US psychiatrists and primary care physicians registered and completed the first stage of the program. Of these, 86 physicians completed all three steps of the PI CME initiative.

Those who did complete the program showed substantial improvements in their management of depression. The percentage of physicians using standardized criteria to screen
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Contact: Connie Hughes
Connie.Hughes@wolterskluwer.com
646-674-6348
Wolters Kluwer Health
Source:Eurekalert

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