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Telephone consultations in child neurology practice: number and contents
INTRODUCTION. The workload of telephone consultations has been scarcely studied except at the Emergency Units, in spite of the considerable amount of time consumed by the task in normal practice. OBJECTIVE. To asses the workload of telephone consultations in a Neuropediatric Unit, during normal working hours. METHODS. A prospective analysis of all calls received during a year, at the outpatient hospitalbased neuropediatric clinic.
RESULTS. 150200 telephone consultations were received every month, decreasing during the holiday seasons. They amount to two thirds of the facetoface contacts at the clinic, during the same period of time, and require about 10% of our daytime working hours. Disorders more likely to produce the calls: epilepsy (40%), mental retardation (19%), cerebral palsy (11%), all others with a frequency lower than 5%. These percentages, and those of hydrocephalus, autism and spina bifida, are similar to those encountered in normal practice, while headaches, speech delay, hyperactivity, syncopes, etc. produced half the number of calls expected; myopathies doubled the number of calls expected. The monthly frequency of calls varied significatively, along the year, for epilepsy, mental retardation, hyperactivity, migraine and autism. Calls were made especially by the family (49%), but it depends of the purpose and the patient’s diagnosis. The purpose was most frequently to consult about the symptomatology of the illness; treatments produced 7% of calls; and discussion about citations, 19.5%, regardless of the diagnosis. CONCLUSION. In neuropediatric practice, telephone consultations should be recognized and provided for in order to manage effectively the clinical demand
Child neurology practiceClinical workloadTelephone consultationsCalidad, Gestión y Organización AsistencialYou may be interested