Frosch DL, Singer KJ, Timmermans S., Health Expect. 14 suppl 1:73-84. doi: 10.1111/j.1369-7625.2009.00579.x., 2011 Mar 01
BACKGROUND: Despite a growing body of evidence supporting the efficacy of patient decision support interventions (DESI), little is known about their implementation in community-based primary care practices.
OBJECTIVE: The goal of this study was to explore the feasibility of integrating the use of DESIs for cancer screening in primary care practices serving patients from diverse backgrounds and learn more about the potential barriers and facilitators of integration.
SETTING: 12 community-based primary care practices in metropolitan Los Angeles.
MAIN VARIABLES STUDIED: Qualitative field notes documented the roles played by staff and physicians in accomplishing project goals, the impact of the programs on the clinical workflow in the practices and other noteworthy observations.
RESULTS: Practices that were better able to integrate the project had adequate clinic infrastructure, a relatively well-matched patient pool, and positive work and patient care environments. The remaining identified components, including staff facilitation and the physician's role accounted for higher level differences between the clinics, acting as barriers and facilitators that distinguished practices that were able to work independently from those that required more assistance and, to a lesser extent, those clinics that did and those that did not meet the project goals.
DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSIONS: This study suggests that implementation of DESIs to be used immediately before a consultation is feasible if the practice infrastructure can provide sufficient basic accommodation and physician and staff are dedicated to patient care goals that are implicit in the use of these tools. Overall, the physician's role appeared to be the most important factor in determining whether project integration was successful.