Projects

With support from funders who are committed to improving diagnosis, the Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine (SIDM) is spearheading significant projects working to support clinicians, patients, researchers and educators to improve the accuracy and timeliness of diagnosis and reduce harm caused by diagnostic error.

 

Coalition to Improve Diagnosis

The Coalition to Improve Diagnosis, formed and led by the Society to Improve Diagnosis, increases awareness and actions that improve diagnosis. Members of the Coalition represent hundreds of thousands of healthcare providers and patients—and the leading health organizations and government agencies involved in patient care. Together, we work to find solutions that enhance diagnostic safety and quality, reduce harm, and ultimately, ensure better health outcomes for patients. The Coalition is made possible with support from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.

 

 

Diagnostic Data Platform Exploration

Diagnostic error is a broad, system-wide problem that has received insufficient attention, in part, because data is lacking that could be useful to guide quality improvement efforts. In theory, since the major EMR applications capture chief presenting complaint, subsequent diagnostic tests, and diagnosis code, it’s assumed this data would be easily accessible. However, based on current analysis, we have not yet identified a single unified database platform existing without boundaries and/or bias (EMR, health system, ACO, HIE, etc) that collects, compiles and provides access tying chief presenting complaint along the continuum of care to diagnosis.

Healthcare organizations lack the ability to compare their diagnostic performance against other health systems, a key driver of improvement activities. With funding from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, SIDM is exploring the concept of building an IT platform that would collect, assess and report important data on diagnosis can (a) serve as a means of measuring the public health burden of diagnostic errors; (b) allow individual institutions to benchmark their performance against peers; (c) guide local quality improvement efforts, and (d) provide a basis for scientifically-sound, uniform public reporting.

 

Inter-Professional Consensus Curriculum on Diagnosis and Diagnostic Error

With support from the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation, SIDM is working with an inter-professional group of experts to develop a consensus curriculum around diagnosis.  After completing a systematic literature review, resulting in hundreds of relevant articles on medical education and diagnosis or clinical reasoning and competencies, a Consensus Committee is in the process of identifying the competencies needed to improve diagnostic performance with the goal of ultimately endorsing them for adoption in education and training.

 

Institute For Healthcare Improvement Collaborative

Working with the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), SIDM and a number health care organizations have developed a collaborative to test and develop tools and techniques to improve the safety of the diagnostic process. With funding from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and using the IHI Model for Improvement which works to accelerate improvement by establishing three fundamental questions:  1) What are we trying to accomplish? 2) How will we know that a change is an improvement? 3) What change can we make that will result in improvement? and then using a Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) cycle to test implementation in real world settings.  The SIDM/IHI collaborative includes six pilot sites: MedStar Health, University of Michigan, Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Tufts Medical Center, Northwell Health and the UCSF Medical Center. At the end of the project SIDM and IHI will evaluate the relative merits and impact of each of pilots and develop a dissemination plan for successful interventions. 

 

 

Questions about these or other initiatives, please email info@improvediagnosis.org.