Introduction Information provided in an outpatient consultation concerns medication, diagnostic tests, treatment and rehabilitation, all of which are crucial knowledge with regards to patient compliance, decision making and general patient satisfaction. Despite good communication skills among clinicians, the communication is challenged by the fact that patients tend to forget or misunderstand parts of the information given. Thus we have designed a study which gives the patients a possibility to hear their consultation again. An Interactive Voice Response platform enables an audio recording of the dialogue between the patient and the clinician via the telephone in the consultation room. By dialing a dedicated number, patients can get access to an audio recording of their consultation by entering their social security number along with a PIN. The primary objective of this study is to determine whether providing patients with digital audio recording of the consultation affects the patients overall perception of their consultation and understanding of the information given. The study includes 5.460 patients from four different outpatient clinics: Pediatrics, Urology, Orthopedics and Internal Medicine. Patients are randomized to either a control group or an intervention group where they are offered audio recording of their consultation. The intervention will be evaluated using a questionnaire regarding: - Overall satisfaction with the consultation - Patients perception of own ability to recall and understand the information provided - Need for additional information or/and uncertainty following the consultation - Application of the audio recording (intervention group) The questionnaire is mailed to the patients two weeks after the consultation. Methods In terms of investigating patients recall and understanding we will carry out an additional study with a subgroup of patients whose consultation has been audio recorded. These patients will be divided into two groups, those who have replayed their consultations and those who have not (control). Interviews are then carried out by telephone with both groups using a specific interview guide concerning different aspects of the information provided during the consultation. Afterwards the extent of patients recall and understanding will be assessed by comparing the interviews with the audio recording of the consultations. Issues for discussion I would like to discuss development of the codebook regarding the assessment of patients recall and understanding. I think it is necessary that the codebook contains a scale which can determine different levels of recall and understanding in the two groups. I wonder if it would be possible to use for instance a 5-point Likert Scale? And then the item responses could be summed to create a score for items concerning recall and items concerning understanding. Another aspect that needs to be taken into account is the difference in content between the consultations. Can this be done by some sort of weighing of the different items?
Communication; Recall; Audio recording
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1st OCHER workshop Communication Research by Oslo Communication in Healthcare Education and Research group, 2012