Original Article

Improving Preventive Care for Women through a Provider Reminder Tool

Authors: Suellen A. Romero de Mello Sa, MD, Lazarus K. Mramba, PhD, Maryam Sattari, MD, MS


Objective: To determine the association of utilization of health maintenance tables (HMTs) as a provider reminder tool within the electronic medical record with the completion of women’s preventive health services.

Methods: Guidelines from the US Preventive Services Task Force and the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices were used to create the HMT. The study sample consisted of female patients between 18 and 74 years of age who visited the University of Florida Internal Medicine Clinic at Medical Plaza between February 15, 2016 and June 24, 2016. We determined whether a reminder system was used for each visit and whether the following preventive health services were up to date: breast cancer screening, cervical cancer screening, and human papillomavirus vaccination. χ2 tests of independence were performed to compare the number of up-to-date preventive measures associated with each provider reminder type.

Results: We divided the visits into four groups based on the type of provider reminder used: the HMT, the computer-generated reminder .HM, simple annotation, and no reminder. Compared with .HM, no reminder, and all non-HMT, HMT utilization had a statistically significant positive association with the completion of breast and cervical cancer screening and human papillomavirus vaccination. The difference between the HMT and simple annotation groups did not achieve statistical difference, however.

Conclusions: Despite well-established, evidence-based guidelines for screening tests and immunizations effective in reducing cancer-related morbidity and mortality, significant gaps in routine preventive care remain. The HMT may be a provider-friendly and cost-effective reminder tool to enhance the preventive health care of women.
Posted in: Obstetrics and Gynecology24

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