Despite advances in health care, there continues to be a gap between practice guidelines and the care delivered by front-line clinicians. Providing physicians with practice data, also known as audit and feedback, is a promising strategy for closing this knowledge-practice gap.
Can interaction with peers increase physicians’ openness to feedback and their engagement with practice data?
Practice data is routinely distributed to physicians within the St. Michael’s Hospital Academic Family Health Team. With each distribution of the data, we are offering different interventions with increasingly complex social interaction to support physicians using practice data for learning and improvement.
Our objectives are to determine:
- How different types of social interaction influence how family physicians interpret data, prioritize areas for improvement, and develop action plans
- How different types of social interaction shift physicians’ openness to feedback
- How different approaches to providing practice data shift physicians’ lens from improving care for an individual patient to affecting systems changes
- How these approaches impact care provided by physicians and the team
We will use a mixed methods approach to understand the feasibility and impact of the different methods of delivering audit and feedback. We will use quantitative methods to assess changes in feedback orientation.
We hypothesize that interaction with peers will help increase physicians’ feedback orientation, particularly for those with low feedback orientation at the start of the study. We will use qualitative methods to guide development of the intervention and to evaluate the perceived impact of our audit and feedback methods.
Our study will influence how other physician groups, government, and professional organizations, provincially and nationally, support family physicians to use practice data.