Puget Sound University Improves Spirometry Testing Quality

18 Jan 2012

The Puget Sound Health Alliance is working with the University of Washington to improve quality in spirometry testing. Spirometry, a common way to measure functioning of the lungs, is used to diagnose conditions ranging from asthma to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD. The test is administered during a clinical visit and then interpreted by the physician. If health care team members haven’t been properly trained in the use of equipment, it can possibly lead to improperly administered or interpreted results. To address this, “…a team at the University of Washington developed a successful virtual quality improvement (QI) program designed to assist, train, and provide feedback to primary care providers and pediatricians in reading spirometry tests for asthma and other pulmonary diseases.” To date, the program has been delivered to more than 200 practices throughout the United States, prompting a 19 percent increase in the number of acceptable spiromety tests conducted by program graduates. This program drastically improved the quality of care and the associated value of this test. Learn more about the University of Washington collaborative here.