“The primary change to the way of working that the paper suggests is through the automated extraction of follow-up recommendations, it is possible to proactively notify or remind referring physicians of an impending follow-up date for their patients,” said Mabotuwana. “In addition, such a system could also track which clinical programs are successful in changing the follow-up adherence rate through patient engagement systems.”
Mabotuwana added that there are many reasons why a patient does not comply with follow-up recommendations. These include valid clinical reasons. For instance, the referring clinician may have prioritized more important clinical concerns, especially when treating a complex patient who has multiple comorbidities. Without recommended follow-up imaging exams, patients then present at a stage where their disease has progressed in such a way as to limit treatment options and efficacy.
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“Having the capability to identify patients who can benefit from patient engagement initiatives is important to improve overall adherence rates,” said Mabotuwana.
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