What does 'patient-centered care' really mean?

By Kate Madden Yee, AuntMinnie.com staff writer

January 5, 2017 -- More articles referencing patient-centered care are being published in radiology journals, but many of them seem to be missing the mark on what actually constitutes a patient-oriented focus, according to a new study published online in the Journal of the American College of Radiology.

Radiologists are being urged to focus more on patient-centered care -- that is, care that puts patients' own values at the center of clinical decision-making. And they're talking to their peers about the topic, as demonstrated by an increasing number of articles appearing in radiology journals.

But do these articles reflect a true understanding of patient-centered care? Perhaps not, according to the group led by Dr. Andrew Rosenkrantz of NYU Langone Medical Center.

"The expansion of patient-centered care in clinical and scholarly arenas is encouraging," the authors wrote. "Nonetheless, concern has been raised regarding confusion about the true meaning of 'patient-centered' and misapplication of the term to refer to a wide range of initiatives that, though potentially improving quality or the patient experience, do not truly constitute patient-centered care."

Making a difference

In a study supported by grants from the Harvey L. Neiman Health Policy Institute, Rosenkrantz and colleagues searched PubMed for articles in radiology journals that referenced patient-centered or patient-centric care. They found 115 articles, of which 40 were original research (JACR, December 22, 2016).

The number of these articles increased steadily between 2000 and 2015:

  • 2000-2008: Zero to four
  • 2010-2012: Five to nine
  • 2013-2014: 14 to 15
  • 2015: 25

Common themes in the articles were optimizing patients' access to reports and images, patients' experience during the imaging exam, image evaluation, and radiologists' interaction with patients, Rosenkrantz and colleagues wrote.

What is 'patient-centered'?

But improving the diagnostic accuracy of an exam or putting a new technology in place to improve efficiency may not translate to outcomes that make a difference to patients, according to the group.

"Performing a diagnostic study and providing an accurate report to the referring physician is of value to the patient but is not patient-centered," the team wrote. Patient-centered care means "interaction with the individual patients to understand what they want."

The researchers also noted that none of the articles dealt with patient involvement in developing how healthcare is delivered.

"None of the original research articles addressed the direct inclusion of patients in the design of healthcare delivery systems in radiology," they wrote.

There's no doubt that more research is needed, according to the group.

"Further investigation of patient-centered care in radiology is encouraged to encompass a broader range of patient-centered ideals, including such areas as cultural diversity and inclusion, shared decision-making and patient autonomy, a trusting and compassionate patient-physician relationship, and inclusion of patients in the design of healthcare delivery systems," the authors concluded.

How satisfied are patients with radiology services?
Just how satisfied are patients with the radiology services they receive -- and how can radiologists improve the patient experience? It's often front-end...
Patients want imaging results stat -- can portals deliver?
What do patients want from providers after they've had an imaging exam? They want their results as soon as possible -- and Web-based portals can help...
SIIM: 7 steps to deliver patient-centered care
PORTLAND, OR - As healthcare moves toward an emphasis on value over volume, it's time to rethink imaging and reinvent processes to facilitate patient-centric...
Do patients want to read their radiology reports?
Radiology reports aren't just for referring physicians anymore. In fact, more than 50% of patients who have online access to their reports read them --...
ACR outreach group to focus on patient-centered care
The American College of Radiology (ACR) said that its newly formed Outreach Committee plans to focus on encouraging radiology professionals to engage...

Copyright © 2017 AuntMinnie.com

Last Updated np 1/4/2017 5:33:01 PM

2 comments so far ...
1/13/2017 5:09:14 PM
“On behalf of Solis Mammography, we couldn’t agree more with the premise of this article.  Truly patient-centric care means listening to the patient first to learn what matters most to them.  That’s the foundation behind our Peace of Mind Mammogram™, which simply put means that if we make their experience an exceptional one, women are more likely to get the annual screening they need.  Our trademarked process included a significant investment in right-brained research with patients and physicians, increases in technology-based solutions like online scheduling and emailed results, an increase in internal behavioral training to focus more on the customer experience, and more than $17 million invested in the latest technology – tomosynthesis (3D mammography.)” James Polfreman, Chief Executive Officer, Solis Mammography

1/13/2017 5:50:17 PM
Becky H
Great explanations and insight here: http://www.jacr.org/issue/S1546-1440(16)X0013-0

Much more than a good experience.