We're unable to sign you in at this time. Please try again in a few minutes.
We were able to sign you in, but your subscription(s) could not be found. Please try again in a few minutes.
There may be a problem with your account. Please contact the AMA Service Center to resolve this issue.
Contact the AMA Service Center:
Telephone: 1 (800) 262-2350 or 1 (312) 670-7827  *   Email: subscriptions@jamanetwork.com
Error Message ......
Article |

Effect of Health Care System Factors on Test Ordering

Seth J. Scholer, MD, MPH; Ken Pituch, MD; Don P. Orr, MD; Denise Clark, MD; Robert S. Dittus, MD, MPH
Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1996;150(11):1154-1159. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1996.02170360044006.
Text Size: A A A
Published online


Objective:  To determine the effect of the emergency department (ED) environment and other health care system factors on test ordering for children with acute abdominal pain.

Methods:  We reviewed the encounter records of 1140 consecutive children seen in either the pediatric clinic or ED of an inner-city teaching hospital with a complaint of acute abdominal pain (<72 hours). In the ED and the clinic, patients were seen by medical students, pediatric residents, and general pediatric faculty members. Measured data on test ordering included the number of tests ordered and the type of tests ordered; specifically examined were the throat culture, urinalysis or urine culture, and chest radiograph. Measured health care system factors included (1) encounter location; (2) resident involvement and level of training; (3) student involvement; and (4) faculty member's years of experience and sex.

Results:  Of the 1140 children, 117 (10.2%) were seen in the ED, 531 (47.1%) were seen by a resident, 344 (30.2%) were seen by a medical student, and 195 (17.1%) were seen by a faculty member with more than 10 years of clinical pediatric experience. After controlling for initial signs and symptoms in multiple logistic regression, a child treated in the ED was no more likely to have had tests ordered than one who was treated in the clinic. Neither resident involvement nor resident training level affected test ordering. Except for decreasing the likelihood of having a urinalysis or urine culture ordered (odds ratio [OR] =0.30; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.15-0.63), student involvement did not affect test ordering. Also, except for decreasing the likelihood of having a throat culture ordered (OR=0.45; 95% CI, 0.25-0.83), being seen by a pediatrician with more than 10 years of experience did not affect test ordering. Children seen by female physicians were more likely (OR= 2.41; 95% CI, 1.57-3.70) to have at least 1 test ordered.

Conclusions:  For children seen for a complaint of acute abdominal pain, we found little evidence that test ordering is affected by encounter location, resident involvement, student involvement, or faculty member experience.Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1996;150:1154-1159


Sign in

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal
• Rent this article ?





Also Meets CME requirements for:
Browse CME for all U.S. States
Accreditation Information
The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
Note: You must get at least of the answers correct to pass this quiz.
Please click the checkbox indicating that you have read the full article in order to submit your answers.
Your answers have been saved for later.
You have not filled in all the answers to complete this quiz
The following questions were not answered:
Sorry, you have unsuccessfully completed this CME quiz with a score of
The following questions were not answered correctly:
Commitment to Change (optional):
Indicate what change(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Your quiz results:
The filled radio buttons indicate your responses. The preferred responses are highlighted
For CME Course: A Proposed Model for Initial Assessment and Management of Acute Heart Failure Syndromes
Indicate what changes(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.


Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

0 Citations

Sign in

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal
• Rent this article ?

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.