Data... it infiltrates our lives, especially for anyone using high tech, smart devices for their health. It feels like data overload, doesn't it? We also have plenty of data in our professional lives. When it comes to outcomes data, how often should it be analyzed? I think the best response takes into consideration your role in your organization.
Clinicians who have a predominant clinical role treating patients will be more focused on the patient in front of them. Patient specific data will be their main focus, right? In this situation, clinicians will be looking at the trend. With regard to how often outcomes data should be analyzed (or watching the trend of the change that is occurring), the bare minimum is once every 30 days. Although I say this, there are definite reasons for analyzing a patient's outcomes data sooner than 30 day intervals.
Prior to leaving for a vacation or going out of town
Upon returning after an extended break in services
When a significant change in presentation (for better or worse) is noticed or reported
Prior to a physician appointment
Prior to a procedure being done by another medical provider
After a procedure was done by another medical provider
Just prior to the end of the episode of care
The reason for analyzing outcomes during the above situations is because it allows clinicians to note trends and adjust the patient's treatment plan accordingly.
What about the situation where the organization has a focus on quality improvement? How often should the data of all the treated patients be analyzed? It seems quarterly would be reasonable. The reason for quarterly has to do with volume. In order to learn about the quality of care provided, it is more helpful to have a large amount of patients' data to analyze. You'll have a nicer snapshot of just how well clinicians are performing.
FOTO provides patient specific data for clinicians. FOTO also provides quarterly reports to assist with an organization's quality initiative. If you are searching for a product that provides both patient and organization reports, please talk to Judy Holder. FOTO can definitely be a solution for you.