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A pragmatic randomized controlled trial of an endoscopist audit and feedback report for colonoscopy

Tinmouth J, Sutradhar R, Li Q, Patel J, Baxter NN, Llovet D, Paszat LF, Rabeneck L. Am J Gastroenterol. 2021; 116(10):2042-51. Epub 2021 Sep 13. DOI:

Introduction — Variation in endoscopist performance contributes to poor-quality colonoscopy. Audit and feedback (A/F) can be used to improve physician performance, particularly among lower performing physicians. In this large pragmatic randomized controlled trial, we compared A/F to improve endoscopists' colonoscopy performance to usual practice.

Methods — Endoscopists practicing in Ontario, Canada, in 2014 were randomly assigned in October 2015 (index date) to receive (intervention group, n = 417) or not receive (control group, n = 416) an A/F report generated centrally using health administrative data. Colonoscopy performance was measured in both groups over two 12-month periods: prereport and postreport (relative to the index date). The primary outcome was polypectomy rate (PR). Secondary outcomes were cecal intubation rate, bowel preparation, and premature repeat after normal colonoscopy. A post hoc analysis used adenoma detection rate as the outcome. Outcomes were compared between groups for all endoscopists and for lower performing endoscopists using Poisson regression analyses under a difference-in-difference framework.

Results — Among all endoscopists, PR did not significantly improve from prereport to postreport periods for those receiving the intervention (relative rate [RR], intervention vs control: 1.07 vs 1.05, P = 0.09). Among lower performing endoscopists, PR improved significantly (RR, intervention vs control 1.34 vs 1.11, P = 0.02) in the intervention group compared with controls. In this subgroup, adenoma detection rate also improved but not significantly (RR, intervention vs control 1.12 vs 1.04, P = 0.12). There was no significant improvement in secondary outcomes between the intervention and control groups.

Discussion — A/F reports for colonoscopy improve performance in lower performing endoscopists.