Subspecialized radiological reporting reduces radiology report turnaround time
Journal Paper/Review - Oct 30, 2020
Zabel Andreas Otto Josef, Leschka Sebastian, Wildermuth Simon, Hodler Juerg, Dietrich Tobias
The objective of this study was to compare the radiology report turnaround time (RTAT) between decentralized/modality-based and centralized/subspecialized radiological reporting at a multi-center radiology enterprise.
RTAT values for MRI, CT, and conventional radiography were compared between decentralized/modality-based (04 September 2017-22 December 2017) and centralized/subspecialized radiology (03 September 2018-21 December 2018) reporting grouped into three subspecializations (body radiology, musculoskeletal radiology, and neuroradiology) at eleven sites of a multi-center radiology enterprise. For the objective of this investigation, hospitals were defined as major and minor hospitals. The Mann-Whitney U test served for statistical analyses.
Change of reporting system from decentralized/modality-based to centralized/subspecialized radiology resulted overall in a significant decrease of the RTAT: from 82 to 77 min for the first signature (p < 0.001), and 119 to 107 min and 295 to 238 min for the second signature (p < 0.001). Subgroup analyses demonstrate a significant decrease of the RTAT for MRI reports (e.g., second signature RTAT, 1051 to 401 min; p < 0.001) and conventional radiographs (e. g., second signature RTAT, 278 to 171 min; p < 0.001). The RTAT at major hospitals decreased from 288 to 245 min (second signature; p < 0.001) while the corresponding RTAT of minor hospitals decreased more remarkably, from 300 to 198 min (p < 0.001). However, the results were heterogenous; in some analyses, the RTAT even increased. The effect size analyses represent small effects.
Change of reporting system from decentralized/modality-based to centralized/subspecialized radiology was associated with a significant decreased RTAT. Specifically, the RTAT for MRI reports and conventional radiographs was significantly reduced. A pronounced RTAT decrease was observed at minor hospitals.