Key words Home teleradiology – Resident supervision – Subspecialist teleconsultations
Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Abstract Study objective: To determine whether teleconsultations by first-year radiology residents with faculty thoracic radiologists, using diagnostic-quality teleradiology workstations in the radiologists' homes, would add clinical value for the acute management of intensive care unit patients after regular working hours. Design and setting: First-year radiology residents recorded key findings on new computed chest radiographs from 173 cardiothoracic intensive care unit patients. After consulting with home-based thoracic radiologists on the same images via teleradiology, they recorded any revisions to their original interpretations. An interdisciplinary evaluation panel determined whether the revisions of the residents' initial readings after the teleradiology consultations would have influenced the acute clinical care of these patients. Measurements and results: In 119 of the 173 cases (69 %), differences in key findings on the chest images were observed between the first-year residents' preliminary readings and their revised readings after teleconsultation with a thoracic radiologist. The evaluation panel determined that the changes in key findings after the teleconsultations could have influenced acute patient care in 86 of the 173 cases (50 %). Conclusions: Through rapid teleradiology consultations with residents, focusing on the key findings on newly-obtained computed chest images, home-based thoracic radiologists provided information of added clinical value for the acute management of cardiothoracic intensive care unit patients in one-half of the cases studied. Diagnostic workstations in the homes of faculty subspecialists may enable first-year radiology residents on night or weekend duty to obtain clinical supervision from faculty subspecialists that approximates more closely the level of supervision that they receive during regular working hours.
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