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Clinical practice guidelines and organizational adaptation: A framework for analyzing economic effects

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  27 February 2006

John E. Schneider
Affiliation:
University of Iowa and Iowa City VA Center for Research in the Implementation of Innovative Strategies in Practice
N. Andrew Peterson
Affiliation:
University of Iowa
Thomas E. Vaughn
Affiliation:
University of Iowa and Iowa City VA Center for Research in the Implementation of Innovative Strategies in Practice
Eric N. Mooss
Affiliation:
Alegent Health
Bradley N. Doebbeling
Affiliation:
Indiana University and Roudebush VA Center on Implementing Evidence-Based Practice

Abstract

Objectives: The overall objective of this article was to review the theoretical and conceptual dimensions of how the implementation of clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) is likely to affect treatment costs.

Methods: An important limitation of the extant literature on the cost effects of CPGs is that the main focus has been on clinical adaptation. We submit that the process innovation aspects of CPGs require changes in both clinical and organizational dimensions. We identify five organizational factors that are likely to affect the relationship between CPGs and total treatment costs: implementation, coordination, learning, human resources, and information. We review the literature supporting each of these factors.

Results: The net organizational effects of CPGs on costs depends on whether the cost-reducing properties of coordination, learning, and human resource management offset potential cost increases due to implementation and information management.

Conclusions: Studies of the cost effects of clinical practice guidelines should attempt to measure, to the extent possible, the effects of each of these clinical and organizational factors.

Type
GENERAL ESSAYS
Copyright
© 2006 Cambridge University Press

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