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Measurement Science Program Colonoscopy Quality Improvement Sub-Project

As part of the Veteran’s Affairs (VA)s Quality Enhancement Research Initiative (QUERI), the project aims to improve veteran health by facilitating the rapid implementation of quality colonoscopy practices into routine care. This project will enable VA medical centers to implement the measurement and reporting of quality colonoscopy for colorectal cancer screening, with a focus on adenoma detection rate (ADR).

Natural language processing (NLP), which is the field studying human-computer interactions, has already been validated for the measurement of ADR.  The next step is to apply structured text mining and NLP to national data on the VINCI platform so that each endoscopist’s and facility’s ADR can be calculated, shared and used.

The project has the potential to affect many VA patients across the country, with 8.76 million veterans served by the biggest healthcare system in the country.  Report cards—created using the NLP of procedure and pathology free-text notes in the EHR—will be provided for VA colonoscopists to monitor quality of patient care.  The VA will roll out this quality improvement initiative to providers throughout the whole network.

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Salt Lake City Veteran’s Administration

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