Background: The need to reduce healthcare practices that provide no value has led to the development of initiatives that generate and publish recommendations to improve the appropriateness of clinical practice by identifying potentially inappropriate services, making recommendations, and proposing improvements. DianaHealth (www.dianahealth.com) identifies, classifies, and publishes recommendations from numerous scientific societies. The purpose of this study was to determine the awareness and perceived usefulness and applicability of published recommendations on low-value diagnostic measures, as judged by physicians who are recognised clinical leaders in their respective centres. Methods: We designed a questionnaire on the diagnostic recommendations considered relevant for each medical specialty and made it available, until September 2016, on DianaHealth. The survey was administered online to clinical leaders from 25 Spanish healthcare centres (hospitals and primary care centres). Results: A total of 413 (40.0%) physicians from 34 different specialties participated. The participation rate varied between centres (range 21.1%-100.0%) and specialties (range 12.5%-78.9%). Do Not Do (57.1%) was the most widely-known initiative. Most participants (82.6%; IQR 77.9%-94.9%) stated that they knew at least one of the 12 initiatives that identify non-recommended practices, and on average they were aware of four initiatives (range 1-12). The initiatives were perceived useful by 82.4% (IQR 73.3%-90.4%), and perceived applicable by 75.6% (IQR 67.4%-86.8%). A total of 531 recommendations were assessed. Sixty-three percent (IQR 53.6%-77.5%) of participants reported they were aware of the recommendations for their corresponding specialty. A total of 84.5% (IQR 75.0%-90.0%) stated they agreed with the recommendations and 84.5% (IQR 75.0%-90.0%) considered them useful. Among those who agreed with their respective recommendations, a median of 51.5% (IQR 41.4%-60.9%) perceived the guidelines as being fully implemented, 40.1% (IQR 31.9%-46.8%) considered them partially implemented, and 7.1% (IQR 3.7%-12.9%), not implemented. Conclusions: Clinical leaders' awareness of initiatives that generate and publish recommendations to improve clinical appropriateness remains low, although they did consider them useful. In general, participants were familiar with their speciality-specific diagnostic recommendations, agreed with them, and perceived them as useful and implemented in their centres. More needs to be done to raise awareness among professionals who do not know of or apply these recommendations.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The development of the online survey was partially funded by the MAPAC program of the Clinical Epidemiology Program of the Centre for Biomedical Research in Epidemiology and Public Health Network (CIBERESP), Institute of Health Carlos III. Spain.
© 2020 The Author(s).
- Low-value care
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health Policy