The identification of agreed criteria for referral following the dental inspection of children in the school setting.
AIM: To clarify the function of the school based dental inspection. OBJECTIVE: For representatives of the Community Dental Service, General Dental Service and Hospital Dental Service to identify an agreed set of criteria for the referral of children following school dental inspection. DESIGN: Qualitative research methodology used to establish a consensus for the inclusion of referral criteria following dental screening. SETTING: Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, England. MATERIALS: A Delphi technique was used to establish a consensus amongst the study participants on the inclusion of nine possible criteria for referral following dental screening. All participants scored each criterion in the range 1-9, with a score of 1 indicating that referral of individuals with the condition should definitely not take place, and a score of 9 indicating referral should definitely take place. Referral criteria were accepted only if they achieved a group median score of 7 or more, with an interquartile range of three scale points, with the lower value being no less than 7. RESULTS: Four of the nine possible criteria met the agreed group standard for inclusion: 'Sepsis', 'Caries in the secondary dentition', 'Overjet > 10 mm', and 'Registered & caries in the permanent dentition'. CONCLUSION: It is possible to agree clear criteria for the referral of children following the school dental inspection. (+info)
Hospital restructuring and the changing nature of the physical therapist's role.
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: This study was conducted to identify role behavior changes of acute care physical therapists and changes in the organizational and professional context of hospitals following restructuring. METHODS: A Delphi technique, which involved a panel of 100 randomly selected acute care physical therapy managers, was used as the research design for this study. Responses from rounds 1 and 2 were synthesized and organized into exhaustive and mutually exclusive categories for round 3. Data obtained from round 3 were used to develop a comprehensive perspective on the changes that have occurred. RESULTS: Changed role behaviors in patient care and professional interaction, including increased emphasis on evaluation, planning, teaching, supervising, and collaboration, appeared to be extensions of unchanged role behaviors. Reported changes in the structural and professional context of physical therapy services included using critical pathways to guide care, providing services system-wide, and using educational activities and meetings to maintain a sense of community. The importance of professionalism to physical therapists' work was identified and related to specific role behavior changes. CONCLUSION AND DISCUSSION: The changing role of physical therapists in acute care hospitals includes an increased emphasis on higher-level skills in patient care and professional interaction and the continuing importance of professionalism. (+info)
Development of indicators for quality assurance in public health medicine.
OBJECTIVES: To develop structure, process, and outcome indicators within a quality rating index for audit of public health medicine. DESIGN: Development of an audit matrix and indicator of quality through a series of group discussions with public health physicians, from which self administered weighted questionnaires were constructed by a modified Delphi technique. SETTING: Five Scottish health boards. SUBJECTS: Public health physicians in the five health boards. MAIN MEASURES: Indicators of quality and a quality rating index for seven selected service categories for each of seven agreed roles of public health medicine: assessment of health and health care needs in information services, input into managerial decision making in health promotion, fostering multisectoral collaboration in environmental health services, health service research and evaluation for child services, lead responsibility for the development and/or running of screening services, and public health medicine training and staff development in communicable disease. RESULTS: Indicators in the form of questionnaires were developed for each topic. Three types of indicator emerged: "global," "restricted," and "specific." A quality rating index for each topic was developed on the basis of the questionnaire scores. Piloting of indicators showed that they are potentially generalisable; evaluation of the system is under way across all health boards in Scotland. CONCLUSION: Measurable indicators of quality for public health medicine can be developed. (+info)
Primary hip and knee replacement surgery: Ontario criteria for case selection and surgical priority.
OBJECTIVES: To develop, from simple clinical factors, criteria to identify appropriate patients for referral to a surgeon for consideration for arthroplasty, and to rank them in the queue once surgery is agreed. DESIGN: Delphi process, with a panel including orthopaedic surgeons, rheumatologists, general practitioners, epidemiologists, and physiotherapists, who rated 120 case scenarios for appropriateness and 42 for waiting list priority. Scenarios incorporated combinations of relevant clinical factors. It was assumed that queues should be organised not simply by chronology but by clinical and social impact of delayed surgery. The panel focused on information obtained from clinical histories, to ensure the utility of the guidelines in practice. Relevant high quality research evidence was limited. SETTING: Ontario, Canada. MAIN MEASURES: Appropriateness ratings on a 7-point scale, and urgency rankings on a 4-point scale keyed to specific waiting times. RESULTS: Despite incomplete evidence panellists agreed on ratings in 92.5% of appropriateness and 73.8% of urgency scenarios versus 15% and 18% agreement expected by chance, respectively. Statistically validated algorithms in decision tree form, which should permit rapid estimation of urgency or appropriateness in practice, were compiled by recursive partitioning. Rating patterns and algorithms were also used to make brief written guidelines on how clinical factors affect appropriateness and urgency of surgery. A summary score was provided for each case scenario; scenarios could then be matched to chart audit results, with scoring for quality management. CONCLUSIONS: These algorithms and criteria can be used by managers or practitioners to assess appropriateness of referral for hip or knee replacement and relative rankings of patients in the queue for surgery. (+info)
Policy priorities in diabetes care: a Delphi study.
OBJECTIVES: To produce policy priorities for improving care of diabetes based on the findings of original research into patient and professional opinions of diabetes care in South Tyneside. To judge the feasibility of implementing these priorities as policy. DESIGN: A two round Delphi survey with a panel of 28 inverted question markexperts. inverted question mark In the first round each respondent produced a list of recommendations based on the findings of a report of patients' and professionals' opinions of diabetes care. 20 respondents produced a total of 180 recommendations, reviewed by a monitoring panel to produce a summary list of 28 recommendations. In the second round respondents rated each recommendation on two 5 point Likert scales. SETTING: Mainly Tyneside but also other parts of England. SUBJECTS: 28 healthcare professionals, including patients and patients' representatives. MAIN MEASURES: Voting by experts on how important each recommendation was to improving diabetes care service, and how likely the recommendation was to be implemented in the next five years. RESULTS: There was a high degree of consensus among respondents about recommendations considered important and likely to be implemented--namely, those concerned with improving communications between doctors in hospital and in general practice, and improving communications with patients. Respondents were more pessimistic about the prospects of implementing the recommendations than about their importance. Respondents thought that standards were important for improving care, and half would stop payments to general practice diabetic clinics that did not keep to district standards for diabetes care. For two recommendations a mismatch occurred between the importance of the recommendations and likelihood of implementation. This may reflect the practical problems of implementing recommendations. 18 of the 22 respondents thought that the study was useful in generating recommendations. CONCLUSIONS: The Delphi technique is a useful method for determining priorities for diabetes care and in assessing the feasibility of implementing recommendations. (+info)
Indicators of the appropriateness of long-term prescribing in general practice in the United Kingdom: consensus development, face and content validity, feasibility, and reliability.
OBJECTIVES: To develop valid, reliable indicators of the appropriateness of long-term prescribing in general practice medical records in the United Kingdom. DESIGN: A nominal group was used to identify potential indicators of appropriateness of prescribing. Their face and content validity were subsequently assessed in a two round Delphi exercise. Feasibility and reliability between raters were evaluated for the indicators for which consensus was reached and were suitable for application. PARTICIPANTS: The nominal group comprised a disciplinary mix of nine opinion leaders and prominent academics in the field of prescribing. The Delphi panel was composed of 100 general practitioners and 100 community pharmacists. RESULTS: The nominal group resulted in 20 items which were refined to produce 34 statements for the Delphi exercise. Consensus was reached on 30, from which 13 indicators suitable for application were produced. These were applied by two independent raters to the records of 49 purposively sampled patients in one general practice. Nine indicators showed acceptable reliability between raters. CONCLUSIONS: 9 indicators of prescribing appropriateness were produced suitable for application to the medical record of any patient on long term medication in United Kingdom general practice. Although the use of the medical record has limitations, this is currently the only available method to assess a patient's drug regimen in its entirety. (+info)
Delphi study into planning for care of children in major incidents.
This paper describes a Delphi study used to identify and improve areas of concern in the planning of care for children in major incidents. The Delphi was conducted over three rounds and used a multidisciplinary panel of 22 experts. Experts were selected to include major incident, immediate care, emergency medicine, and paediatric specialists. This paper presents a series of consensus statements that represent the Delphi group's opinion on the management of children in major incidents. The statements cover all phases of major incident planning and response. Paediatric services may play a vital role in the preparation and response to a major incident involving children. This paper represents a consensus view on how best to plan and respond to major incidents involving children. An accompanying paper describes the practical implementation of this guidance. (+info)
Planning for major incidents involving children by implementing a Delphi study.
This paper provides a practical approach to the difficult problem of planning for a major incident involving children. It offers guidance on how general principles resulting from an expert Delphi study can be implemented regionally and locally. All phases of the response are covered including preparation, management of the incident, delivery of medical support during the incident, and recovery and support. A check list for regional planners is provided. Supplementary equipment is discussed and action cards for key roles in the paediatric hospital response are shown. Particular emphasis is placed on management of the secondary-tertiary interface including the special roles of paediatric assessment teams and paediatric transfer teams. A paediatric primary triage algorithm is provided. The important role of local interpretation of guidance is emphasised. (+info)