Goldie Hawn once said, “Why not just live in the moment, especially if it has a good beat?” For radiology peer review, being in the moment means incorporating peer review into the day-to-day workflow. According to a peer review study, adoption of a PACS integrated solution for peer review into the point-of-care clinical workflow can dramatically increase voluntary faculty participation and compliance in the radiology peer review process.
Prior to implementation of an integrated solution, fewer than half of the 52 faculty members regularly submitted any peer reviews. Since the PACS solution, over 17,113 peer review submissions were submitted to the ACR in a little over fourteen months, representing nearly 100% faculty participation.
Embracing Radiology Peer Review
Mirroring these results, one New Jersey radiology private practice sought to maintain efficiency despite their radiologists’ lack of enthusiasm for radiology peer review. South Jersey Radiology Associates, P.A. (SJRA), is comprised of nine imaging centers and 45 full and part-time radiologists that handle three hospitals totaling 500 beds in the Virtua Health System.
Bill Muhr, MD, president and CEO of SJRA, notes that “The American College of Radiology (ACR) developed the radiology peer review process, which was initially a paper process and now is electronic. However, it was a relatively small number of cases each day done in a retrospective fashion. Honestly, at the end of the day, people just wanted to get it done and be able to leave for the day.”
Integrating radiology peer review into their normal workflow in order to improve communication and patient care was the goal he set out to achieve.
“The idea of an electronic peer review that seamlessly integrated with our PACS, allowing radiologists to capture the data throughout their workflow, was really the key process we focused on,” Muhr said.
Capturing Report Quality Data
After looking at several different radiology peer review solutions, SJRA chose the peerVue QICS platform. Muhr states, “peerVue was very interested in our approach to capturing the report quality data. Remember, everyone had been doing only the classic ACR-type peer review. When we spoke to peerVue about integrating what we call ‘report quality,’ they were interested in working with us to develop that process.”
Enhancing point-of-care radiology peer review, peerVue provides a quick, integrated way for physicians to submit feedback on a radiologist’s performance and diagnosis directly from the PACS desktop.
“The main value is in improving our quality. Clearly that’s the focus of a peer review process. Our radiologists have embraced it and don’t see it as a ‘gotcha,’ but rather that it helps them recognize there are particular areas where they need to improve,” Muhr added.