Web based decision support for patients in self-referral to a primary health care professional

Web based decision support for patients in self-referral to a primary health care professional

Background and problem statement

In the Netherlands, patients are allowed to perform self-referral to physiotherapy. However, in some cases it is better to see a general practitioner first, especially when serious diseases are the cause of a health care problem. Therefore, a triage is needed to assess the urgency of the request for help. Is making an appointment really necessary? And if not, is it possible to provide the patient with the most relevant information to enable self-management on his or her complaint?

We developed a model of the triage process for patients with low back pain, based on guidelines and interviews with physiotherapists and general practitioners. This model forms the base in the design and development of a web based decisions support system for patients to perform self-referral to a primary health care professional or to perform self-care.

Assignment

The purpose of this assignment is to see whether the methods used to develop the model of the triage process for patients with low back pain also applies to other (musculoskeletal) health care problems. The student is free to choose a health care problem of his or her own interest.

These methods imply

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Studying guidelines and interviewing health care professionals on the classification of patients suffering from the chosen health care problem;

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Modelling the triage process based on the interview results;

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Evaluating the found classification determinants within the model of the triage process and within health care professionals;

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Fitting the found results into concepts of an ontology;

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Designing a web based prototype of the clinical decision support system for the triage of the chosen health care problem.

Important key words in this context are:
ontology”, “domain knowledge”, “reference engine” and “clinical decision support system”.

Components

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Literature study

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Interviews with health care professionals

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Experiments

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Analysis

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Thesis writing

Educational program

MSc Computer Science

Research theme

Telemedicine

Supervision and info

Daily supervisor:

Wendy Oude Nijeweme- d’Hollosy, MSc
BSS, Telemedicine

Zuidhorst 228

Tel. +31 (0)53 489 2766

w.dhollosy@utwente.nl

Lex van Velsen, PhD
Prof.dr.ir. H.J. Hermens

If you have further questions about the assignment, please let us know. It is always possible to have a free chat about the assignment.