Background As part of a collaborative project, two hospices agreed to audit medical on-call activity for 12 weeks. Previous on-call audits had required doctors to record activity on a spreadsheet or paper form. These had not delivered an adequate number of responses. We surmised that clunky data entry methods were a significant barrier to compliance (Cunningham, Quan, Hemmelgarn, et al. BMC Med Res Methodol. 2015; 15:32; Haas, Eckman, Bach. J Official Statistics. 2021; 37(4): 907–930).
Aims To improve compliance by:
Minimising ‘response burden’ by creating a quick, accessible and easy to navigate data entry process (Cunningham et al., 2015; Haas, et al., 2021)
Engendering engagement through consultation with doctors before, during and after the audit (Nair, Adams, Mertova. Quality Higher Ed. 2008; 14(3): 225–232; Hospice On-call Audit User Feedback Questionnaire).
Methods We built a questionnaire on Microsoft Forms, a free, web-based platform that can be accessed on any device. Questions were kept to a minimum and we used the platform’s ‘branching’ feature to streamline navigation. Pre-populated answer choices helped ensure consistent datasets, as well as minimising the need to type. Doctors were involved in questionnaire design, and feedback was sought for evaluation (Hospice On-call Audit User Feedback Questionnaire).
Outcome/results At 8 weeks.
Data recorded by at least one hospice on 54/56 days (96.43%).
Compliance for Hospice A – 77% (previous audit, 2020 – 27%).
Compliance for Hospice B – 75% (previous audit, 2018 – 68%).
Time to complete:
Average call completion time – 1.18 minutes.
38% of entries completed < 1 minute.
68% < 2 minutes.
100% Microsoft Forms is preferred method for recording on-call activity.
100% would recommend Microsoft Forms for future audits.
Conclusion Results to date show Microsoft Forms to be more effective than spreadsheets or paper for collecting audit data. Compliance has improved, and user feedback is 100% positive. However, there are occasional instances of non-compliance which the doctors attribute to forgetfulness so the response rate could further improve with regular reminders and incentives (Cook, Wittich, Daniels, et al. J Med Internet Res. 2016; 18(9):e244).
Statistics from Altmetric.com
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