Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Original research: Postpartum testing rates among women with a history of gestational diabetes--Systematic review

Publication date:

October 2013

SOURCE:Primary Care Diabetes, Volume 7, Issue 3

Author(s): Michael P. Carson , Matthew I. Frank , Erin Keely

AimsGestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) is increasing and 30% have persistent postpartum dysglycemia. Reported compliance with recommended postpartum testing ranges 9-95% without a clear explanation for this wide variation. Small and conflicting differences in testing rates are associated with some demographics (race, use of insulin), but system factors likely play a larger role. A systematic literature review was performed to identify system based factors that could explain the broad variation in postpartum GDM testing rates.MethodsOriginal articles reporting postpartum testing rates among women with GDM were identified within PubMed, OVID, EMBASE, and the Cochrane Database of systematic reviews. Articles that did not report rates for the entire GDM cohort were excluded.Results54/307 citations met inclusion criteria. The use of proactive patient contact programs increased postpartum testing rates from an average of 33% (range 9-71%) up to 60% (range 14-95%).ConclusionsProactively contacting patients via phone calls, education programs, or postal reminders was associated with higher postpartum testing rates. Rather than working to identifying individual demographic factors, systems based approaches were associated with a larger potential impact, and appear easily generalizable. Clinicians should think beyond individual habits and consider systematic approaches to improving testing rates.
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