Do oncologists prefer subspecialty radiology reports? A quality care study
Insights Imaging . 2021 May 26;12(1):64. doi: 10.1186/s13244-021-01007-4.
Stefania Rizzo, Maria Del Grande, Vittoria Espeli, Anastasios Stathis, Gabriele Maria Nicolino, Filippo Del Grande
Background: The main objective was to assess whether CT reports of radiologists subspecialized in oncologic imaging respond better to oncological referrals than reports from general radiologists. The secondary objective was to assess differences in ratings between a senior and junior oncologist. Two hundred radiological reports pertaining to oncological patients were retrospectively selected of which 100 each were written by subspecialized radiologists and general radiologists, respectively. The senior and junior oncologists each rated all CT reports using a Likert scale from 1 to 5 (1 = very poor, 5 = excellent) for the following information: anatomical details; interpretation of findings; need for further explanations; appropriateness of conclusions; overall satisfaction. Comparisons between ratings assigned to reports from generalist radiologists and subspecialty radiologists were performed using the Mann-Whitney U test. Agreement between both oncologists was assessed through Gwet's coefficient.
Results: For all but two of the five items obtained from the senior oncologist, oncologists' ratings were significantly higher for subspecialty radiologists' reports (p < 0.01); mean values from both oncologists were generally higher for subspecialty reports (p < 0.001). Agreement between the senior and junior oncologist in the rating of reports from general and subspecialty radiologists was either moderate to substantial (0.5986-0.6788) or substantial to almost perfect (0.6958-0.8358).
Conclusions: According to a senior and junior oncologist, CT reports performed by subspecialized radiologists in oncologic imaging are clearer, more accurate, and more appropriate in the interpretation and conclusions compared to reports written by general radiologists. Likewise, the overall satisfaction of the oncologist from a subspecialized radiologist report is higher.
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