Use of point-of-care ultrasound for inpatient care may improve patient satisfaction | 2 Minute Medicine

1. The use of POCUS in an adult inpatient setting improved patient satisfaction with their overall care and perceived 

Evidence Rating Level: 3 (Average)

Point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) is a tool used to aid in decision-making at the bedside. While POCUS is used frequently in emergency departments, with increasing use in inpatient settings. Aside from the known diagnostic benefits, recent studies have shown that POCUS has socioemotional benefits as well. There is thought to be a placebo-like “POCUS positive care effect” (PPCE). In this cross-sectional study, 30 adult participants were recruited from an inpatient medical center, median age of 63.0 years. Researchers made observations during routine POCUS encounters. Certain factors were observed to be associated with greater PPCE, such as trusting and respectful relationships between patients and care providers. Severe illness and pathological findings were observed to reduce PPCE. In addition, 27 patients completed post-pocus surveys. The median patient-rated magnitude of PPCE on a 1-5 scale was 5/5 for the extent to which POCUS improved the patient’s satisfaction with their care and perceived efficiency of care. This study demonstrates that POCUS is useful not only for diagnostic purposes but also for positive socioemotional effects and increased patient satisfaction. A limitation of this study is the small sample size. Additionally, surveys were only administered to patients after POCUS was completed, so no comparison can be made to patient satisfaction before they received POCUS. Future work may build on this study by administering surveys to patients both before and after POCUS to more clearly assess the impact of POCUS on the overall patient experience. 

Click to read the study in PLoSONE

Image: PD

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