Adherence to Radiology Recommendations in a Clinical CT Lung Screening Program.
J Am Coll Radiol. 2018 Feb;15(2):282-286. doi: 10.1016/j.jacr.2017.10.014. Epub 2017 Dec 28. Alshora S1, McKee BJ2, Regis SM2, Borondy Kitts AK3, Bolus CC2, McKee AB2, French RJ2, Flacke S2, Wald C2.
BACKGROUND: Assess patient adherence to radiologist recommendations in a clinical CT lung cancer screening program.
METHODS: Patients undergoing CT lung cancer screening between January 12, 2012, and June 12, 2013, were included in this institutional review board-approved retrospective review. Patients referred from outside our institution were excluded. All patients met National Comprehensive Cancer Network Guidelines Lung Cancer Screening high-risk criteria. Full-time program navigators used a CT lung screening program management system to schedule patient appointments, generate patient result notification letters detailing the radiologist follow-up recommendation, and track patient and referring physician notification of missed appointments at 30, 60, and 90 days. To be considered adherent, patients could be no more than 90 days past due for their next recommended examination as of September 12, 2014. Patients who died, were diagnosed with cancer, or otherwise became ineligible for screening were considered adherent. Adherence rates were assessed across multiple variables.
RESULTS: During the study interval, 1,162 high-risk patients were screened, and 261 of 1,162 (22.5%) outside referrals were excluded. Of the remaining 901 patients, 503 (55.8%) were male, 414 (45.9%) were active smokers, 377 (41.8%) were aged 65 to 73, and >95% were white. Of the 901 patients, 772 (85.7%) were adherent. Most common reasons for nonadherence were patient refusal of follow-up exam (66.7%), inability to successfully contact the patient (20.9%), and inability to obtain the follow-up order from the referring provider (7.8%); 23 of 901 (2.6%) were discharged for other reasons.
CONCLUSIONS: High rates of adherence to radiologist recommendations are achievable for in-network patients enrolled in a clinical CT lung screening program.