Improving Hepatitis C Screening With EHR-Based Prompts

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There was an increase in HCV screening from 7.6% for patients with a primary care provider visit in the 6 months before BPA.
There was an increase in HCV screening from 7.6% for patients with a primary care provider visit in the 6 months before BPA.

Healthday News — Implementation of an electronic health record (EHR)-based prompt can improve hepatitis C virus (HCV) screening rates among baby boomers, according to a study published in Hepatology.

Monica A. Konerman, MD, from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and colleagues assessed the impact of an EHR-based prompt on HCV screening rates in baby boomers. Primary care providers were prompted with an EHR-based Best Practice Advisory (BPA) to perform HCV screening for patients who were born between 1945 and 1965, had no prior diagnosis of HCV infection, and lacked prior documented HCV testing. For newly diagnosed patients, the BPA had associated educational materials, order set, and streamlined access to specialty care.

The researchers found that 52,660 baby boomers were seen in primary care clinics in the 3 years prior to BPA implementation, and 28% were screened.

There was an increase in HCV screening from 7.6% for patients with a primary care provider visit in the 6 months before BPA to 72% in the 1-year after BPA. To date, all 53 patients newly diagnosed were referred for specialty care; 11 had advanced fibrosis or cirrhosis, 20 started treatment, and nine achieved sustained viral response.

"Implementation of an EHR-based prompt increased HCV screening rates among baby boomers in primary care by five-fold due to efficiency in determining needs for HCV screening and work-flow design," the authors write.

One author disclosed financial ties to Bristol-Myers Squibb and Gilead.

References

Konerman MA, Thomson M, Gray K, Moore M, Choxi H, Seif E, Lok AS. Impact of an electronic health record alert in primary care on increasing hepatitis C screening and curative treatment for baby boomers [published July 17, 2017]. Hepatology. doi: 10.1002/hep.29362.

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