Background: A medical record is an important source of information regarding medical care and medical record review plays an important role in the evaluation of the teaching proficiency. The study analyzed the difference between internal and external auditing when conducting medical record review for faculty promotion in a study institute.
Methods: We analyzed the scores related to the medical records maintained by applicants for the faculty promotion of attending physicians during the period between 2008 and 2010 at the Chang Gung Memorial Hospital. The scores were obtained from one internal reviewer of the study institute and two external reviewers from other medical centers, and routine scores were obtained from the Committee of Medical Record 1 year before application. Pearson's correlation coefficient was used to analyze the correlation and statistical significance.
Results: There were 259 applicants for faculty promotion enrolled in this study [professors (n = 33, 13%), associate professors (n = 63, 24%), assistant professors (n = 90, 35%), lecturers (n = 73, 28%)]. The scores of the external reviewers 1 and 2 were correlated with routine scores (r = 0.187, p = 0.002; r = 0.198, p = 0.001; N= 259), respectively. The correlation between external reviewers' average and ordinary scores was significant for assistant professor (r = 0.334, p = 0.001, n = 90) and professor grades (r = 0.469, p = 0.006, n = 33). However, the internal reviewer scores did not correlate with the routine scores (r = 0.073, p = 0.241, N = 259).
Conclusions: The scores from external reviewers correlated more with routine scores than the scores from internal reviewers, suggesting that utilizing an external auditing system of medical records for the faculty promotion of attending physicians is quite feasible and balanced.