Development and Implementation of Clinical Algorithms in Occupational Health Practice

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Objective:Occupational health (OH) practice is framed by legal, ethical, and regulatory requirements. Integrating this information into daily practice can be a difficult task. We devised evidence-based framework standards of good practice that would aid clinical management, and assessed their impact.Methods:The clinical algorithm was the method deemed most appropriate to our needs. Using “the first OH consultation” as an example, the development, implementation, and evaluation of an algorithm is described.Results:The first OH consultation algorithm was developed. Evaluation demonstrated an overall improvement in recording of information, specifically consent, recreational drug history, function, and review arrangements.Conclusions:Clinical algorithms can be a method for assimilating and succinctly presenting the various facets of OH practice, for use by all OH clinicians as a practical guide and as a way of improving quality in clinical record-keeping.

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