The Science Journal of the American Association for Respiratory Care

1997 OPEN FORUM Abstracts


Robert Messenger BS, RRT, Respiratory Care Division - Pulmonary Services Department, MetroHealth Medical Center, Cleveland, OH.

Introduction: Patient driven protocols (PDPs) have gained wide acceptance within the Respiratory Care profession, however only anecdotal references can be found concerning the effect that these programs have on physicians' attitudes. We sought to gain insight into physicians' perceptions of a bronchodilator and oxygen PDP program at a large metropolitan teaching hospital. Method: A survey was developed, consisting of 12 questions designed to determine physician perceptions specifically related to the effect that the PDP program had on the timeliness, quality and appropriateness of the resulting respiratory care, and the professionalism of the RCPs participating in the process. Additional questions aimed to determine if the physicians' felt that they understood the goals of the program, whether the PDPs helped them to manage patients with respiratory disorders and if the program should be expanded. 194 anonymous questionnaires were distributed to Attending and Resident physicians. Results: 54 of the 194 surveys were returned (27.8%). 28 Attending and 26 Resident physicians responded, representing a fairly even distribution of respondents at 51.9% and 48.1% respectively. The tables below identify the responses obtained.

Table 1. Significant Decrease No Increase Significant No

n=54 Decrease Change Increase Response

Timeliness 0(0.0%) 4(7.4%) 17(31.5%) 21(38.9%) 5(9.3%) 7(13.0%)

Quality 0(0.0%) 3(5.6%) 16(29.6%) 24(44.4%) 3(5.6%) 8(14.8%)

Appropriateness 1(1.9%) 2(3.7%) 13(24.1%) 25(46.3%) 5(9.3%) 7(13.0%)

Professionalism 1(1.9%) 1(1.9%) 22(40.7%) 17(31.5%) 5(9.3%) 7(13.0%)

Table 2. Yes No No

n=54 Response

Do you feel that you understand 37(68.5%) 17(31.5%) 0(0.0%)

the goals of the program?

Does PDP help you manage patients? 35(64.8%) 12(22.2%) 7(13.0%)

Should a PDP for hyperinflation 29(53.7%) 19(35.2%) 6(11.1%)

be developed?

Should a PDP for pulmonary hygiene 43(79.6%) 6(11.1%) 5(9.3%)

be developed?

Should a PDP for trach management 43(79.6%) 5(9.3%) 6(11.1%)

be developed?

Conclusion: Although the response to this survey was not sufficient to generalize the findings to our entire physician population, the results do indicate a favorable perception of the program among the respondents. Most of the physicians identified that there was an improvement in the respiratory care resulting from the program (Table 1). Also, the majority of physicians indicated that the program helped them to manage their patients and that expansion of the program would be favorable to them (Table 2).


You are here: » Past OPEN FORUM Abstracts » 1997 Abstracts » PHYSICIANS' PERCEPTIONS OF A PROTOCOL PROGRAM