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J Am Coll Radiol. 2014 Jun;11(6):552-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jacr.2013.12.016. Epub 2014 Jan 30.

Actionable findings and the role of IT support: report of the ACR Actionable Reporting Work Group.

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Radiology Associates of the Fox Valley, Neenah, Wisconsin. Electronic address:
University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama.
Henry Ford Health System, Detroit, Michigan.
Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Cedar Valley Medical Specialists, Waterloo, Iowa.


The ACR formed the Actionable Reporting Work Group to address the potential role of IT in the communication of imaging findings, especially in cases that require nonroutine communication because of the urgency of the findings or their unexpected nature. These findings that require special communication with referring clinicians are classified as "actionable findings." The work group defines 3 categories of actionable findings that require, respectively, communication and clinical decision within minutes (category 1), hours (category 2), or days (category 3). Although the work group does not believe that there can be definitive lists of such findings, it developed lists in each category that would apply in most general hospital settings. For each category, the work group discusses ways in which IT can assist interpreting radiologists in successfully communicating to the relevant clinicians to ensure optimal patient care. IT systems can also help document the communication and facilitate auditing of the documentation. The work group recommends that vendors develop platforms that can be customized on the basis of local preferences and needs. Whatever system is used, it should be highly reliable and fit seamlessly into radiologists' workflow.


Actionable findings; Joint Commission; actionable reporting; communication; critical findings; critical results; decision support; incidental findings; information technology; unexpected findings

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