HumanInsight Physician satisfaction with telemedicine and in-person visits in otolaryngology
Am J Otolaryngol. 2022 Aug 9;43(5):103596. doi: 10.1016/j.amjoto.2022.103596. Online ahead of print.
OBJECTIVES: To investigate the differential factors associated with physician satisfaction between telemedicine and in-person visits in otolaryngology.
METHODS: Study data included 646 telemedicine and 365 in-person encounters delivered from May-June 2020 at a tertiary center outpatient setting. Encounter-specific physician satisfaction was rated by 15 otolaryngologists using Provider Satisfaction Questionnaire (range 0-100) consisted of 5 items (patient needs addressed, patient involvement, adequacy of information given, quality of emotion support provided, and general interaction satisfaction). A multivariable linear mixed-effects model was used to explore patient demographic and clinical factors associated with physician satisfaction.
RESULTS: Physician satisfaction scores for telemedicine and in-person visits were 83.0 [95 % CI: 77.0-88.9] and 88.1 [95 % CI: 82.5-93.6], respectively. Among telemedicine visits, physician satisfaction scores were significantly higher for follow-up (vs. new), videoconference (vs. telephone) encounters, and English-speaking patients in a multivariable model. New encounters had significantly lower satisfaction subdomain scores for adequacy of information given to the patient (β = -4.7 [95 % CI: -7.3 to -2.0], p = 0.001) and addressing the needs of the patient among telemedicine visits (β = -4.1, [95 % CI: -7.1 to -1.1], p = 0.007) while there were no differences in satisfaction scores between new vs follow-up visits among in-person visits. For non-English speaking patients, the physician satisfaction scores were significantly lower for subdomain scores assessing active patient participation (β = -13.1, [95 % CI: -13.1 to -17.4], p < 0.001) and emotional support given to the patient (β = -7.8, [95 % CI: -11.0 to -4.5], p < 0.001) for telemedicine visits.
CONCLUSIONS: Telemedicine has been broadly adopted as an alternative option to deliver care in otolaryngology since COVID-19 pandemic. Appropriate triaging based on patient and encounter characteristics may enhance physician satisfaction and overall experiences with telemedicine. Further efforts are needed to provide adequate interpretation and videoconference services during telemedicine visits.
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