The Appropriateness of Care Program supports the Vascular Project team, comprised of Saskatchewan vascular surgeons and interventional radiologists, to develop and implement a standard of care for management of patients with poor blood flow in their legs (peripheral arterial disease). At the project’s onset, the project team identified the need for more detailed clinical information in order to better understand the root causes of variation in clinicians’ practices.
Routine data collection of key clinical indicators was established as surgeons collect this information within their regular work flow. The Appropriateness team provides reports back to the clinicians based on this data to help understand and learn from variations in the care that clinicians provide for their patients. The goal is to use the information to drive clinical quality improvement to both reduce inappropriate variation and improve patient outcomes. Currently, using information provided from the data collection, the project team is focused on creating an agreed-upon practice for patients with mild disease.
The Vascular Project team is also working with eHealth to develop an electronic tool to make the collection and analysis of data easier for clinicians. Part of this work will allow clinicians to replace the current standard practice for documentation (oral dictation) and support the one-time collection of patient information, at the point of care. It can then be used for multiple purposes.