Using a tailored web-based intervention to set goals to reduce unnecessary recall

Acad Radiol. 2011 Apr;18(4):495-503. doi: 10.1016/j.acra.2010.11.017. Epub 2011 Jan 20.


Rationale and objectives: To examine whether an intervention strategy consisting of a tailored web-based intervention, which provides individualized audit data with peer comparisons and other data that can affect recall, can assist radiologists in setting goals for reducing unnecessary recall.

Materials and methods: In a multisite randomized controlled study, we used a tailored web-based intervention to assess radiologists' ability to set goals to improve interpretive performance. The intervention provided peer comparison audit data, profiled breast cancer risk in each radiologist's respective patient populations, and evaluated the possible impact of medical malpractice concerns. We calculated the percentage of radiologists who would consider changing their recall rates, and examined the specific goals they set to reduce recall rates. We describe characteristics of radiologists who developed realistic goals to reduce their recall rates, and their reactions to the importance of patient risk factors and medical malpractice concerns.

Results: Forty-one of 46 radiologists (89.1%) who started the intervention completed it. Thirty-one (72.1%) indicated they would like to change their recall rates and 30 (69.8%) entered a text response about changing their rates. Sixteen of the 30 (53.3%) radiologists who included a text response set realistic goals that would likely result in reducing unnecessary recall. The actual recall rates of those who set realistic goals were not statistically different from those who did not (13.8% vs. 15.1%, respectively). The majority of selected goals involved re-reviewing cases initially interpreted as Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System category 0. More than half of radiologists who commented on the influence of patient risk (56.3%) indicated that radiologists planned to pay more attention to risk factors, and 100% of participants commented on concerns radiologists have about malpractice with the primary concern (37.5%) being fear of lawsuits.

Conclusions: Interventions designed to reduce unnecessary recall can succeed in assisting radiologists to develop goals that may ultimately reduce unnecessary recall.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Breast Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging*
  • Breast Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Computer-Assisted Instruction / methods*
  • Diagnostic Errors / prevention & control*
  • Education, Medical, Continuing / methods*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Internet
  • Mammography / statistics & numerical data*
  • Middle Aged
  • Observer Variation
  • Prevalence
  • Professional Competence / statistics & numerical data
  • Radiology / education*
  • United States / epidemiology