Positive tests

Hoffer, Edward P.,M.D. EHOFFER at MGH.HARVARD.EDU
Mon Mar 9 14:54:42 UTC 2015


I would respectfully disagree. I tell my patients that while MOST of the time, no news = good news, in a small percentage of situations, no news = the test got lost, the report was misfiled, the specimen was never received, etc. I doubt many doctors intentionally do not tell patients about abnormal findings, I do believe that a test that never gets reported is easy to lose sight of.  So, closed loop = better. It is not much effort to write “good news” on a report and mail a copy to the patient if you do not have a portal.
Ed
Edward P Hoffer MD

From: Mark H Ebell [mailto:ebell at UGA.EDU]
Sent: Sunday, March 08, 2015 10:53 PM
To: IMPROVEDX at LIST.IMPROVEDIAGNOSIS.ORG
Subject: Re: [IMPROVEDX] Positive tests

While in an ideal world, that makes sense, in a busy primary care practice in the non-academic setting, communicating every negative result would impose a large cost on the practice. Someone has to call or mail or email every patient for every test ever ordered. I don’t think that’s realistic. Not that it wouldn’t be valuable, but in the real world it probably makes more sense to be selective in communicating negative findings, focusing on critical results (you don’t have cancer, your cath was normal, etc).

Best,

Mark

—
Mark H. Ebell MD, MS
Professor of Epidemiology
University of Georgia
Editor, Essential Evidence
Deputy Editor, American Family Physician
ebell at uga.edu<mailto:ebell at uga.edu>


From: <Pauker>, Stephen
Reply-To: Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine, "Pauker, Stephen"
Date: Sunday, March 8, 2015 at 8:10 PM
To: "IMPROVEDX at LIST.IMPROVEDIAGNOSIS.ORG<mailto:IMPROVEDX at LIST.IMPROVEDIAGNOSIS.ORG>"
Subject: Re: [IMPROVEDX] Positive tests

In my experience and writings , negative or normal test results can be quite important in making a diagnosis, so not communicating them to the patient can be withholding key information. All results positive or negative should be communicated. Further withholding them can sometimes lead to repeating the test

Steve



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-----Original Message-----
From: Robert Bell [rmsbell at ESEDONA.NET<mailto:rmsbell at ESEDONA.NET>]
Sent: Sunday, March 08, 2015 01:33 PM Eastern Standard Time
To: IMPROVEDX at LIST.IMPROVEDIAGNOSIS.ORG<mailto:IMPROVEDX at LIST.IMPROVEDIAGNOSIS.ORG>
Subject: [IMPROVEDX] Positive tests



Many doctor's offices only call or mention to patients positive test results that have been undertaken (particularly lab tests). Is that a good thing and does it in any way impact diagnosis?

Also, what are the effects of the new electronic portals on diagnosis. It is a big change in medicine.

Rob Bell

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