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1.  Multifaceted Intervention to Prevent Venous Thromboembolism in Patients Hospitalized for Acute Medical Illness: A Multicenter Cluster-Randomized Trial 
PLoS ONE  2016;11(5):e0154832.
Misuse of thromboprophylaxis may increase preventable complications for hospitalized medical patients.
To assess the net clinical benefit of a multifaceted intervention in emergency wards (educational lectures, posters, pocket cards, computerized clinical decision support systems and, where feasible, electronic reminders) for the prevention of venous thromboembolism.
Prospective cluster-randomized trial in 27 hospitals. After a pre-intervention period, centers were randomized as either intervention (n = 13) or control (n = 14). All patients over 40 years old, admitted to the emergency room, and hospitalized in a medical ward were included, totaling 1,402 (712 intervention and 690 control) and 15,351 (8,359 intervention and 6,992 control) in the pre-intervention and intervention periods, respectively.
Symptomatic venous thromboembolism or major bleeding (primary outcome) occurred at 3 months in 3.1% and 3.2% of patients in the intervention and control groups, respectively (adjusted odds ratio: 1.02 [95% confidence interval: 0.78–1.34]). The rates of thromboembolism (1.9% vs. 1.9%), major bleedings (1.2% vs. 1.3%), and mortality (11.3% vs. 11.1%) did not differ between the groups. Between the pre-intervention and intervention periods, the proportion of patients who received prophylactic anticoagulant treatment more steeply increased in the intervention group (from 35.0% to 48.2%: +13.2%) than the control (40.7% to 44.1%: +3.4%), while the rate of adequate thromboprophylaxis remained stable in both groups (52.4% to 50.9%: -1.5%; 49.1% to 48.8%: -0.3%).
Our intervention neither improved adequate prophylaxis nor reduced the rates of clinical events. New strategies are required to improve thromboembolism prevention for hospitalized medical patients.
Trial Registration NCT01212393
PMCID: PMC4881951  PMID: 27227406
2.  Evaluating the Impact of Computerized Provider Order Entry on Medical Students Training at Bedside: A Randomized Controlled Trial 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(9):e0138094.
To evaluate the impact of computerized provider order entry (CPOE) at the bedside on medical students training.
Materials and Methods
We conducted a randomized cross-controlled educational trial on medical students during two clerkship rotations in three departments, assessing the impact of the use of CPOE on their ability to place adequate monitoring and therapeutic orders using a written test before and after each rotation. Students’ satisfaction with their practice and the order placement system was surveyed. A multivariate mixed model was used to take individual students and chief resident (CR) effects into account. Factorial analysis was applied on the satisfaction questionnaire to identify dimensions, and scores were compared on these dimensions.
Thirty-six students show no better progress (beginning and final test means = 69.87 and 80.98 points out of 176 for the control group, 64.60 and 78.11 for the CPOE group, p = 0.556) during their rotation in either group, even after adjusting for each student and CR, but show a better satisfaction with patient care and greater involvement in the medical team in the CPOE group (p = 0.035*). Both groups have a favorable opinion regarding CPOE as an educational tool, especially because of the order reviewing by the supervisor.
This is the first randomized controlled trial assessing the performance of CPOE in both the progress in prescriptions ability and satisfaction of the students. The absence of effect on the medical skills must be weighted by the small time scale and low sample size. However, students are more satisfied when using CPOE rather than usual training.
PMCID: PMC4569055  PMID: 26367388
4.  Treatment for Stable Coronary Artery Disease: A Network Meta-Analysis of Cost-Effectiveness Studies 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(6):e98371.
Introduction and Objectives
Numerous studies have assessed cost-effectiveness of different treatment modalities for stable angina. Direct comparisons, however, are uncommon. We therefore set out to compare the efficacy and mean cost per patient after 1 and 3 years of follow-up, of the following treatments as assessed in randomized controlled trials (RCT): medical therapy (MT), percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) without stent (PTCA), with bare-metal stent (BMS), with drug-eluting stent (DES), and elective coronary artery bypass graft (CABG).
RCT comparing at least two of the five treatments and reporting clinical and cost data were identified by a systematic search. Clinical end-points were mortality and myocardial infarction (MI). The costs described in the different trials were standardized and expressed in US $ 2008, based on purchasing power parity. A network meta-analysis was used to compare costs.
Fifteen RCT were selected. Mortality and MI rates were similar in the five treatment groups both for 1-year and 3-year follow-up. Weighted cost per patient however differed markedly for the five treatment modalities, at both one year and three years (P<0.0001). MT was the least expensive treatment modality: US $3069 and 13 864 after one and three years of follow-up, while CABG was the most costly: US $27 003 and 28 670 after one and three years. PCI, whether with plain balloon, BMS or DES came in between, but was closer to the costs of CABG.
Appreciable savings in health expenditures can be achieved by using MT in the management of patients with stable angina.
PMCID: PMC4045726  PMID: 24896266
5.  Comparison of intervention effects in split-mouth and parallel-arm randomized controlled trials: a meta-epidemiological study 
Split-mouth randomized controlled trials (RCTs) are popular in oral health research. Meta-analyses frequently include trials of both split-mouth and parallel-arm designs to derive combined intervention effects. However, carry-over effects may induce bias in split- mouth RCTs. We aimed to assess whether intervention effect estimates differ between split- mouth and parallel-arm RCTs investigating the same questions.
We performed a meta-epidemiological study. We systematically reviewed meta- analyses including both split-mouth and parallel-arm RCTs with binary or continuous outcomes published up to February 2013. Two independent authors selected studies and extracted data. We used a two-step approach to quantify the differences between split-mouth and parallel-arm RCTs: for each meta-analysis. First, we derived ratios of odds ratios (ROR) for dichotomous data and differences in standardized mean differences (∆SMD) for continuous data; second, we pooled RORs or ∆SMDs across meta-analyses by random-effects meta-analysis models.
We selected 18 systematic reviews, for 15 meta-analyses with binary outcomes (28 split-mouth and 28 parallel-arm RCTs) and 19 meta-analyses with continuous outcomes (28 split-mouth and 28 parallel-arm RCTs). Effect estimates did not differ between split-mouth and parallel-arm RCTs (mean ROR, 0.96, 95% confidence interval 0.52–1.80; mean ∆SMD, 0.08, -0.14–0.30).
Our study did not provide sufficient evidence for a difference in intervention effect estimates derived from split-mouth and parallel-arm RCTs. Authors should consider including split-mouth RCTs in their meta-analyses with suitable and appropriate analysis.
PMCID: PMC4023173  PMID: 24886043
Meta-analysis; Randomized controlled trial; Split-mouth trial; Bias; Meta-epidemiological study
6.  A clinical data warehouse-based process for refining medication orders alerts 
The objective of this case report is to evaluate the use of a clinical data warehouse coupled with a clinical information system to test and refine alerts for medication orders control before they were fully implemented. A clinical decision rule refinement process was used to assess alerts. The criteria assessed were the frequencies of alerts for initial prescriptions of 10 medications whose dosage levels depend on renal function thresholds. In the first iteration of the process, the frequency of the ‘exceeds maximum daily dose’ alerts was 7.10% (617/8692), while that of the ‘under dose’ alerts was 3.14% (273/8692). Indicators were presented to the experts. During the different iterations of the process, 45 (16.07%) decision rules were removed, 105 (37.5%) were changed and 136 new rules were introduced. Extensive retrospective analysis of physicians' medication orders stored in a clinical data warehouse facilitates alert optimization toward the goal of maximizing the safety of the patient and minimizing overridden alerts.
PMCID: PMC3422842  PMID: 22523345
Computer-assisted decision-making; decision support systems; clinical organization and administration; drug therapy; computer-assisted organization and administration; clinical data warehouse; clinical decision rule
7.  Drug Administration Errors in Hospital Inpatients: A Systematic Review 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(6):e68856.
Drug administration in the hospital setting is the last barrier before a possible error reaches the patient.
We aimed to analyze the prevalence and nature of administration error rate detected by the observation method.
Data Sources
Embase, MEDLINE, Cochrane Library from 1966 to December 2011 and reference lists of included studies.
Study Selection
Observational studies, cross-sectional studies, before-and-after studies, and randomized controlled trials that measured the rate of administration errors in inpatients were included.
Data Extraction
Two reviewers (senior pharmacists) independently identified studies for inclusion. One reviewer extracted the data; the second reviewer checked the data. The main outcome was the error rate calculated as being the number of errors without wrong time errors divided by the Total Opportunity for Errors (TOE, sum of the total number of doses ordered plus the unordered doses given), and multiplied by 100. For studies that reported it, clinical impact was reclassified into four categories from fatal to minor or no impact. Due to a large heterogeneity, results were expressed as median values (interquartile range, IQR), according to their study design.
Among 2088 studies, a total of 52 reported TOE. Most of the studies were cross-sectional studies (N=46). The median error rate without wrong time errors for the cross-sectional studies using TOE was 10.5% [IQR: 7.3%-21.7%]. No fatal error was observed and most errors were classified as minor in the 18 studies in which clinical impact was analyzed. We did not find any evidence of publication bias.
Administration errors are frequent among inpatients. The median error rate without wrong time errors for the cross-sectional studies using TOE was about 10%. A standardization of administration error rate using the same denominator (TOE), numerator and types of errors is essential for further publications.
PMCID: PMC3688612  PMID: 23818992
8.  Development of a Core Set of Outcomes for Randomized Controlled Trials with Multiple Outcomes – Example of Pulp Treatments of Primary Teeth for Extensive Decay in Children 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(1):e51908.
Evidence-based comparisons of interventions can be challenging because of the diversity of outcomes in randomized controlled trials (RCTs). We aimed to describe outcomes in RCTs assessing pulp treatments for primary teeth and to develop a core set of component outcomes to be part of composite outcome defining the failure of a pulp treatment.
We systematically reviewed articles of RCTs comparing pulp treatments for primary molars published up to February 2012. We abstracted all outcomes assessed in each trial, then used a small-group consensus process to group similar outcomes, which were reduced to a composite outcome of failure of a pulp treatment by a 3-round Delphi process involving expert authors and dentists.
We included 47 reports of RCTs in the review, for 83 reported outcomes (median 11 outcomes per RCT). These outcomes were grouped into 24 overarching outcome categories. We contacted 210 experts for the Delphi process and 25% to 30% participated. The process identified the following 5 component outcomes as part of a composite outcome of failure of a pulp treatment: soft-tissue pathology, pain, pathologic mobility, pathologic radiolucency and pathologic root resorption.
RCTs of pulp treatments for primary teeth investigate diverse outcomes. Our consensus process, involving clinicians but no patient, allowed for compiling a core set of component outcomes to define the composite outcome failure of a pulp treatment for primary teeth.
PMCID: PMC3536772  PMID: 23300955
9.  Evaluation of drug administration errors in a teaching hospital 
Medication errors can occur at any of the three steps of the medication use process: prescribing, dispensing and administration. We aimed to determine the incidence, type and clinical importance of drug administration errors and to identify risk factors.
Prospective study based on disguised observation technique in four wards in a teaching hospital in Paris, France (800 beds). A pharmacist accompanied nurses and witnessed the preparation and administration of drugs to all patients during the three drug rounds on each of six days per ward. Main outcomes were number, type and clinical importance of errors and associated risk factors. Drug administration error rate was calculated with and without wrong time errors. Relationship between the occurrence of errors and potential risk factors were investigated using logistic regression models with random effects.
Twenty-eight nurses caring for 108 patients were observed. Among 1501 opportunities for error, 415 administrations (430 errors) with one or more errors were detected (27.6%). There were 312 wrong time errors, ten simultaneously with another type of error, resulting in an error rate without wrong time error of 7.5% (113/1501). The most frequently administered drugs were the cardiovascular drugs (425/1501, 28.3%). The highest risks of error in a drug administration were for dermatological drugs. No potentially life-threatening errors were witnessed and 6% of errors were classified as having a serious or significant impact on patients (mainly omission). In multivariate analysis, the occurrence of errors was associated with drug administration route, drug classification (ATC) and the number of patient under the nurse's care.
Medication administration errors are frequent. The identification of its determinants helps to undertake designed interventions.
PMCID: PMC3364158  PMID: 22409837
Hospital care; Medication errors; Direct observation
10.  Geographical Representativeness of Published and Ongoing Randomized Controlled Trials. The Example of: Tobacco Consumption and HIV Infection 
PLoS ONE  2011;6(2):e16878.
The challenge for evidence-based healthcare is to reduce mortality and the burden of diseases. This study aimed to compare where research is conducted to where research is needed for 2 public health priorities: tobacco consumption and HIV infection.
We identified randomized controlled trials (RCTs) included in Cochrane systematic reviews published between 1997 and 2007 and registered ongoing RCTs identified in January 2009 through the World Health Organization's International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (WHO-ICTRP) evaluating interventions aimed at reducing or stopping tobacco use and treating or preventing HIV infection. We used the WHO and World Bank reports to classify the countries by income level, as well as map the global burden of disease and mortality attributable to tobacco use and HIV infection to the countries where the trials performed.
We evaluated 740 RCTs included in systematic reviews and 346 ongoing RCTs. For tobacco use, 4% of RCTs included in systematic reviews and 2% of ongoing trials were performed in low- and middle-income countries, even though these countries represented 70% of the mortality related to tobacco use. For HIV infection, 31% of RCTs included in systematic reviews and 33% of ongoing trials were performed in low- and middle-income countries, even though these countries represented 99% of the mortality related to HIV infection.
Our results highlight an important underrepresentation of low- and middle-income countries in currently available evidence (RCTs included in systematic reviews) and awaiting evidence (registered ongoing RCTs) for reducing or stopping tobacco use and treating or preventing HIV infection.
PMCID: PMC3036724  PMID: 21347383
11.  Targeting Neuronal Populations of the Striatum 
The striatum is critically involved in motor and motivational functions. The dorsal striatum, caudate–putamen, is primarily implicated in motor control and the learning of habits and skills, whereas the ventral striatum, the nucleus accumbens, is essential for motivation and drug reinforcement. The GABA medium-sized spiny neurons (MSNs, about 95% of striatal neurons), which are targets of the cerebral cortex and the midbrain dopaminergic neurons, form two pathways. The dopamine D1 receptor-positive (D1R) striatonigral MSNs project to the medial globus pallidus and substantia nigra pars reticulata (direct pathway) and co-express D1R and substance P, whereas dopamine D2 receptor-positive (D2R) striatopallidal MSNs project to the lateral globus pallidus (indirect pathway) and co-express D2R, adenosine A2A receptor (A2AR) and enkephalin (Enk). The specific role of the two efferent pathways in motor and motivational control remained poorly understood until recently. Indeed, D1R striatonigral and D2R striatopallidal neurons, are intermingled and morphologically indistinguishable, and, hence, cannot be functionally dissociated with techniques such as chemical lesions or surgery. In view of the still debated respective functions of projection D2R striatopallidal and D1R striatonigral neurons and striatal interneurons, both in motor control and learning but also in more cognitive processes such as motivation, the present review sum up the development of new models and techniques (bacterial artificial chromosome transgenesis, optogenetic, viral transgenesis) allowing the selective targeting of these striatal neuronal populations in adult animal brain to understand their specific roles.
PMCID: PMC3139926  PMID: 21811438
striatum; medium-sized spiny neurons; interneurons; transgenesis; BAC
12.  Effects of automated alerts on unnecessarily repeated serology tests in a cardiovascular surgery department: a time series analysis 
Laboratory testing is frequently unnecessary, particularly repetitive testing. Among the interventions proposed to reduce unnecessary testing, Computerized Decision Support Systems (CDSS) have been shown to be effective, but their impact depends on their technical characteristics. The objective of the study was to evaluate the impact of a Serology-CDSS providing point of care reminders of previous existing serology results, embedded in a Computerized Physician Order Entry at a university teaching hospital in Paris, France.
A CDSS was implemented in the Cardiovascular Surgery department of the hospital in order to decrease inappropriate repetitions of viral serology tests (HBV).
A time series analysis was performed to assess the impact of the alert on physicians' practices. The study took place between January 2004 and December 2007. The primary outcome was the proportion of unnecessarily repeated HBs antigen tests over the periods of the study. A test was considered unnecessary when it was ordered within 90 days after a previous test for the same patient. A secondary outcome was the proportion of potentially unnecessary HBs antigen test orders cancelled after an alert display.
In the pre-intervention period, 3,480 viral serology tests were ordered, of which 538 (15.5%) were unnecessarily repeated. During the intervention period, of the 2,095 HBs antigen tests performed, 330 unnecessary repetitions (15.8%) were observed. Before the intervention, the mean proportion of unnecessarily repeated HBs antigen tests increased by 0.4% per month (absolute increase, 95% CI 0.2% to 0.6%, p < 0.001). After the intervention, a significant trend change occurred, with a monthly difference estimated at -0.4% (95% CI -0.7% to -0.1%, p = 0.02) resulting in a stable proportion of unnecessarily repeated HBs antigen tests. A total of 380 unnecessary tests were ordered among 500 alerts displayed (compliance rate 24%).
The proportion of unnecessarily repeated tests immediately dropped after CDSS implementation and remained stable, contrasting with the significant continuous increase observed before. The compliance rate confirmed the effect of the alerts. It is necessary to continue experimentation with dedicated systems in order to improve understanding of the diversity of CDSS and their impact on clinical practice.
PMCID: PMC2848138  PMID: 20298618
13.  Applicability and generalisability of the results of systematic reviews to public health practice and policy: a systematic review 
Trials  2010;11:20.
The purpose of the study was to evaluate systematic reviews of research into two public health priorities, tobacco consumption and HIV infection, in terms of the reporting of data related to the applicability of trial results (i.e., whether the results of a trial can be reasonably applied or generalized to a definable group of patients in a particular setting in routine practice, also called external validity or generalisability).
All systematic reviews of interventions aimed at reducing or stopping tobacco use and treating or preventing HIV infection published in the Cochrane database of systematic reviews and in journals indexed in MEDLINE between January 1997 and December 2007 were selected. We used a standardized data abstraction form to extract data related to applicability in terms of the context of the trial, (country, centres, settings), participants (recruitment, inclusion and exclusion criteria, baseline characteristics of participants such as age, sex, ethnicity, coexisting diseases or co-morbidities, and socioeconomic status), treatment (duration, intensity/dose of treatment, timing and delivery format), and the outcomes assessment from selected reviews.
A total of 98 systematic reviews were selected (57 Cochrane reviews and 41 non-Cochrane reviews); 49 evaluated interventions aimed at reducing or stopping tobacco use and 49 treating or preventing HIV infection. The setting of the individual studies was reported in 45 (46%) of the systematic reviews, the number of centres in 21 (21%), and the country where the trial took place in 62 (63%). Inclusion and exclusion criteria of the included studies were reported in 16 (16%) and 13 (13%) of the reviews, respectively. Baseline characteristics of participants in the included studies were described in 59 (60%) of the reviews. These characteristics concerned age in about half of the reviews, sex in 46 (47%), and ethnicity in 9 (9%).
Applicability of results was discussed in 13 (13%) of the systematic reviews. The reporting was better in systematic reviews by the Cochrane Collaboration than by non-Cochrane groups.
Our study highlighted the lack of consideration of applicability of results in systematic reviews of research into 2 public health priorities: tobacco consumption and HIV infection.
PMCID: PMC2838881  PMID: 20187938
14.  Chronology of prescribing error during the hospital stay and prediction of pharmacist's alerts overriding: a prospective analysis 
Drug prescribing errors are frequent in the hospital setting and pharmacists play an important role in detection of these errors. The objectives of this study are (1) to describe the drug prescribing errors rate during the patient's stay, (2) to find which characteristics for a prescribing error are the most predictive of their reproduction the next day despite pharmacist's alert (i.e. override the alert).
We prospectively collected all medication order lines and prescribing errors during 18 days in 7 medical wards' using computerized physician order entry. We described and modelled the errors rate according to the chronology of hospital stay. We performed a classification and regression tree analysis to find which characteristics of alerts were predictive of their overriding (i.e. prescribing error repeated).
12 533 order lines were reviewed, 117 errors (errors rate 0.9%) were observed and 51% of these errors occurred on the first day of the hospital stay. The risk of a prescribing error decreased over time. 52% of the alerts were overridden (i.e error uncorrected by prescribers on the following day. Drug omissions were the most frequently taken into account by prescribers. The classification and regression tree analysis showed that overriding pharmacist's alerts is first related to the ward of the prescriber and then to either Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical class of the drug or the type of error.
Since 51% of prescribing errors occurred on the first day of stay, pharmacist should concentrate his analysis of drug prescriptions on this day. The difference of overriding behavior between wards and according drug Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical class or type of error could also guide the validation tasks and programming of electronic alerts.
PMCID: PMC2820036  PMID: 20067620
15.  Effect of Alerts for Drug Dosage Adjustment in Inpatients with Renal Insufficiency 
Medication errors constitute a major problem in all hospitals. Between 20% and 46% of prescriptions requiring dosage adjustments based on renal function are inappropriate. This study aimed to determine whether implementing alerts at the time of ordering medication integrated into the computerized physician order entry decreases the proportion of inappropriate prescriptions based on the renal function of inpatients.
Six alternating 2-month control and intervention periods were conducted between August 2006 and August 2007 in two medical departments of a teaching hospital in France. A total of 603 patients and 38 physicians were included. During the intervention periods, alerts were triggered if a patient with renal impairment was prescribed one of the 24 targeted drugs that required adjustment according to estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR).
The main outcome measure was the proportion of inappropriate first prescriptions, according to recommendation.
A total of 1,122 alerts were triggered. The rate of inappropriate first prescriptions did not differ significantly between intervention and control periods (19.9% vs. 21.3%; p = 0.63). The effect of intervention differed significantly between residents and senior physicians (p = 0.03). Residents tended to make fewer errors in intervention versus control periods (Odds ratio 0.69; 95% confidence interval 0.41 to 1.15), whereas senior physicians tended to make more inappropriate prescriptions in intervention periods (odds ratio 1.88; 95% confidence interval 0.91 to 3.89).
Alert activation was not followed by a significant decrease in inappropriate prescriptions in our study. Thus, it is still necessary to evaluate the impact of these systems if newly implemented in other settings thanks to studies also designed to watch for possible unanticipated effects of decision supports and their underlying causes.
PMCID: PMC2649320  PMID: 19074305
16.  Effect of response format for clinical vignettes on reporting quality of physician practice 
Clinical vignettes have been used widely to compare quality of clinical care and to assess variation in practice, but the effect of different response formats has not been extensively evaluated. Our objective was to compare three clinical vignette-based survey response formats – open-ended questionnaire (A), closed-ended (multiple-choice) questionnaire with deceptive response items mixed with correct items (B), and closed-ended questionnaire with only correct items (C) – in rheumatologists' pre-treatment assessment for tumor-necrosis-factor (TNF) blocker therapy.
Study design: Prospective randomized study. Setting: Rheumatologists attending the 2004 French Society of Rheumatology meeting. Physicians were given a vignette describing the history of a fictitious woman with active rheumatoid arthritis, who was a candidate for therapy with TNF blocking agents, and then were randomized to receive questionnaire A, B, or C, each containing the same four questions but with different response formats, that asked about their pretreatment assessment. Measurements: Long (recommended items) and short (mandatory items) checklists were developed for pretreatment assessment for TNF-blocker therapy, and scores were expressed on the basis of responses to questionnaires A, B, and C as the percentage of respondents correctly choosing explicit items on these checklists. Statistical analysis: Comparison of the selected items using pairwise Chi-square tests with Bonferonni correction for variables with statistically significant differences.
Data for all surveys distributed (114 As, 118 Bs, and 118 Cs) were complete and available for analysis. The percentage of questionnaire A, B, and C respondents for whom data was correctly complete for the short checklist was 50.4%, 84.0% and 95.0%, respectively, and was 0%, 5.0% and 5.9%, respectively, for the long version. As an example, 65.8%, 85.7% and 95.8% of the respondents of A, B, and C questionnaires, respectively, correctly identified the need for tuberculin skin test (p < 0.0001).
In evaluating clinical practice with use of a clinical vignette, a multiple-choice format rather than an open-ended format overestimates physician performance. The insertion of deceptive response items mixed with correct items in closed-ended (multiple-choice) questionnaire failed to avoid this overestimation.
PMCID: PMC3224732  PMID: 19638231
17.  Determinants of Success for Computerized Clinical Decision Support Systems Integrated into CPOE Systems: a Systematic Review 
We carried out a systematic review of published trials to identify the methodological characteristics of studies and technical characteristics of computerized clinical decision support systems (CCDSSs) associated with efficacy for the main outcome of the study.
Four characteristics of the content of decision support and the way in which the user is provided with assistance seem to be associated with the success of CCDSSs: a) System-initiated interventions, b) Assistance without user control over output, c) Systems in which data are automatically retrieved from the electronic medical record and d) Systems providing corollary actions in CPOE.
Major differences in outcome reporting between studies could be reduced by the use of dedicated tools to standardize methodological reporting.
PMCID: PMC1839370  PMID: 17238410
18.  Systematic review and meta-analysis of strategies for the diagnosis of suspected pulmonary embolism 
BMJ : British Medical Journal  2005;331(7511):259.
Objectives To assess the likelihood ratios of diagnostic strategies for pulmonary embolism and to determine their clinical application according to pretest probability.
Data sources Medline, Embase, and Pascal Biomed and manual search for articles published from January 1990 to September 2003.
Study selection Studies that evaluated diagnostic tests for confirmation or exclusion of pulmonary embolism.
Data extracted Positive likelihood ratios for strategies that confirmed a diagnosis of pulmonary embolism and negative likelihood ratios for diagnostic strategies that excluded a diagnosis of pulmonary embolism.
Data synthesis 48 of 1012 articles were included. Positive likelihood ratios for diagnostic tests were: high probability ventilation perfusion lung scan 18.3 (95% confidence interval 10.3 to 32.5), spiral computed tomography 24.1 (12.4 to 46.7), and ultrasonography of leg veins 16.2 (5.6 to 46.7). In patients with a moderate or high pretest probability, these findings are associated with a greater than 85% post-test probability of pulmonary embolism. Negative likelihood ratios were: normal or near normal appearance on lung scan 0.05 (0.03 to 0.10), a negative result on spiral computed tomography along with a negative result on ultrasonography 0.04 (0.03 to 0.06), and a d-dimer concentration < 500 μg/l measured by quantitative enzyme linked immunosorbent assay 0.08 (0.04 to 0.18). In patients with a low or moderate pretest probability, these findings were associated with a post-test probability of pulmonary embolism below 5%. Spiral computed tomography alone, a low probability ventilation perfusion lung scan, magnetic resonance angiography, a quantitative latex d-dimer test, and haemagglutination d-dimers had higher negative likelihood ratios and can therefore only exclude pulmonary embolism in patients with a low pretest probability.
Conclusions The accuracy of tests for suspected pulmonary embolism varies greatly, but it is possible to estimate the range of pretest probabilities over which each test or strategy can confirm or rule out pulmonary embolism.
PMCID: PMC1181264  PMID: 16052017
19.  Personalized versus non-personalized computerized decision support system to increase therapeutic quality control of oral anticoagulant therapy: an alternating time series analysis 
The quality control of oral anticoagulant therapy (OAT) during the initiation and maintenance treatment is generally poor. Physicians' ordering of OAT (especially fluindione and warfarin) can be improved by dose adjustment algorithms, taking into account the results of International Normalized Ratio (INR). Reminders at the point of care, computerized or not, have been demonstrated to be effective in changing physicians prescription behavior.
However, few studies have addressed the benefit of personalized reminders versus non personalized reminders, whereas the personalized reminders require more development to access patient record data and integrate with the computerized physician order entry system.
The Hospital Information System of George Pompidou European Hospital integrates an electronic medical record, lab test and drugs order entry system. This system allows to evaluate such reminders and to consider their implementation for routine use as well as the continuous evaluation of their impact on medical practice quality indicators.
The objective of this study is to evaluate the impact of two types of reminders on overtreatment by oral anticoagulant: a simple reminder of text formatted dose adjustment table and a personalized recommendation for oral anticoagulant dose and next date of INR control, adapted to patient data. Both types of reminders appear to the physician at the moment of drug ordering.
The study is an alternating time series experiment with three 6 months periods, each one including every 2 months according to a Latin square scheme: a control period without any reminder, a period with the simple non personalized reminder, a period with personalized reminder. All patients hospitalized in departments using the computerized physician order entry system and ordered fluindione or warfarin, will be included in the study between November 2004 and May 2006.
Main outcome will be the proportion of overcoagulation, as expressed by the proportion of observation time with INR over 4.5, assuming INR change linearly. Secondary outcome is the incidence of major haemorrhagic events. Data will be collected thanks to Hospital Information Systems databases.
Data will be analyzed taking into account patient and physician clustering effect.
PMCID: PMC526261  PMID: 15456515
20.  Construction of a questionnaire measuring outpatients' opinion of quality of hospital consultation departments 
Few questionnaires on outpatients' satisfaction with hospital exist. All have been constructed without giving enough room for the patient's point of view in the validation procedure. The main objective was to develop, according to psychometric standards, a self-administered generic outpatient questionnaire exploring opinion on quality of hospital care.
First, a qualitative phase was conducted to generate items and identify domains using critical analysis incident technique and literature review. A list of easily comprehensible non-redundant items was defined using Delphi technique and a pilot study on outpatients. This phase involved outpatients, patient association representatives and experts. The second step was a quantitative validation phase comprised a multicenter study in 3 hospitals, 10 departments and 1007 outpatients. It was designed to select items, identify dimensions, measure reliability, internal and concurrent validity. Patients were randomized according to the place of questionnaire completion (hospital v. home) (participation rate = 65%). Third, a mail-back study on 2 departments and 248 outpatients was conducted to replicate the validation (participation rate = 57%).
A 27-item questionnaire comprising 4 subscales (appointment making, reception facilities, waiting time and consultation with the doctor). The factorial structure was satisfactory (loading >0.50 on each subscale for all items, except one item). Interscale correlations ranged from 0.42 to 0.59, Cronbach α coefficients ranged from 0.79 to 0.94. All Item-scale correlations were higher than 0.40. Test-retest intraclass coefficients ranged from 0.69 to 0.85. A unidimensional 9-item version was produced by selection of one third of the items within each subscale with the strongest loading on the principal component and the best item-scale correlation corrected for overlap. Factors related to satisfaction level independent from departments were age, previous consultations in the department and satisfaction with life. Completion at hospital immediately after consultation led to an overestimation of satisfaction. No satisfaction score differences existed between spontaneous respondents and patients responding after reminder(s).
Good estimation of patient opinion on hospital consultation performance was obtained with these questionnaires. When comparing performances between departments or the same department over time scores need to be adjusted on 3 variables that influence satisfaction independently from department. Completion of the questionnaire at home is preferable to completion in the consultation facility and reminders are not necessary to produce non-biased data.
PMCID: PMC516447  PMID: 15294020
Patient satisfaction; quality of care; hospital; consultation; psychometrics
21.  Effect of multifaceted intervention promoting early switch from intravenous to oral acetaminophen for postoperative pain: controlled, prospective, before and after study 
BMJ : British Medical Journal  2000;321(7274):1460-1463.
Problem Need to improve the efficiency of postoperative pain management by early switching from intravenous to oral acetaminophen.
Design Implementation of local guidelines aimed at improving nurses' and doctors' behaviour. A controlled, prospective, before and after study evaluated its impact on appropriateness and costs.
Background and setting Orthopaedic surgery department (intervention) and all other surgical departments (control) of a university hospital. Five anaesthetists and 30 nurses of orthopaedic department participated in study.
Key measures for improvement Reducing number of acetaminophen injections per patient, reducing consumption of acetaminophen injections; cost savings over a one year period.
Strategies for improvement Multifaceted intervention included a local consensus process, short educational presentation, poster displayed in all nurses' offices, and feedback of practices six months after implementation of guidelines.
Effects of change Mean number of acetaminophen injections per patient decreased from 6.81 before intervention to 2.36 six months after. Monthly consumption of acetaminophen injections per 100 patients decreased by 320.9 (95% confidence interval 192.4 to 449.4) in intervention department and remained unchanged in control departments. Annual cost reduction was projected to be £15 100.
Lessons learnt Simple and locally implemented guidelines can improve practices and cut costs. Educational interventions can improve professionals' behaviour when they are based on actual working practices, use interactive techniques such as discussion groups, and are associated with other effective implementation strategies.
PMCID: PMC1119173  PMID: 11110743

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