Publications by authors named "Thomas E Dawson"

3 Publications

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Evaluation of a Clinical Decision Support Strategy to Increase Seasonal Influenza Vaccination Among Hospitalized Children Before Inpatient Discharge.

JAMA Netw Open 2021 07 1;4(7):e2117809. Epub 2021 Jul 1.

Department of Pediatrics, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia.

Importance: Hospitalized children are at increased risk of influenza-related complications, yet influenza vaccine coverage remains low among this group. Evidence-based strategies about vaccination of vulnerable children during all health care visits are especially important during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Objective: To design and evaluate a clinical decision support (CDS) strategy to increase the proportion of eligible hospitalized children who receive a seasonal influenza vaccine prior to inpatient discharge.

Design, Setting, And Participants: This quality improvement study was conducted among children eligible for the seasonal influenza vaccine who were hospitalized in a tertiary pediatric health system providing care to more than half a million patients annually in 3 hospitals. The study used a sequential crossover design from control to intervention and compared hospitalizations in the intervention group (2019-2020 season with the use of an intervention order set) with concurrent controls (2019-2020 season without use of an intervention order set) and historical controls (2018-2019 season with use of an order set that underwent intervention during the 2019-2020 season).

Interventions: A CDS intervention was developed through a user-centered design process, including (1) placing a default influenza vaccine order into admission order sets for eligible patients, (2) a script to offer the vaccine using a presumptive strategy, and (3) just-in-time education for clinicians addressing vaccine eligibility in the influenza order group with links to further reference material. The intervention was rolled out in a stepwise fashion during the 2019-2020 influenza season.

Main Outcomes And Measures: Proportion of eligible hospitalizations in which 1 or more influenza vaccines were administered prior to discharge.

Results: Among 17 740 hospitalizations (9295 boys [52%]), the mean (SD) age was 8.0 (6.0) years, and the patients were predominantly Black (n = 8943 [50%]) or White (n = 7559 [43%]) and mostly had public insurance (n = 11 274 [64%]). There were 10 997 hospitalizations eligible for the influenza vaccine in the 2019-2020 season. Of these, 5449 (50%) were in the intervention group, and 5548 (50%) were concurrent controls. There were 6743 eligible hospitalizations in 2018-2019 that served as historical controls. Vaccine administration rates were 31% (n = 1676) in the intervention group, 19% (n = 1051) in concurrent controls, and 14% (n = 912) in historical controls (P < .001). In adjusted analyses, the odds of receiving the influenza vaccine were 3.25 (95% CI, 2.94-3.59) times higher in the intervention group and 1.28 (95% CI, 1.15-1.42) times higher in concurrent controls than in historical controls.

Conclusions And Relevance: This quality improvement study suggests that user-centered CDS may be associated with significantly improved influenza vaccination rates among hospitalized children. Stepwise implementation of CDS interventions was a practical method that was used to increase quality improvement rigor through comparison with historical and concurrent controls.
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July 2021

Reducing Prescribing Errors in Hospitalized Children on the Ketogenic Diet.

Pediatr Neurol 2021 02 22;115:42-47. Epub 2020 Nov 22.

Department of Pediatrics, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia; Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, Atlanta, Georgia.

Background: Children on the ketogenic diet must limit carbohydrate intake to maintain ketosis and reduce seizure burden. Patients on ketogenic diet are vulnerable to harm in the hospital setting where carbohydrate-containing medications are commonly prescribed. We developed clinical decision support to reduce inappropriate prescription of carbohydrate-containing medications in hospitalized children on ketogenic diet.

Methods: A clinical decision support alert was developed through formative and summative usability testing. The alert warned prescribers when they entered an order for a carbohydrate-containing medication in patients on ketogenic diet. The alert was implemented using a quasi-experimental design with sequential crossover from control to intervention at two tertiary care pediatric hospitals within a single health system. The primary outcome was carbohydrate-containing medication orders per patient-day.

Results: During the study period, there were 280 ketogenic diet patient admissions totaling 1219 patient-days. The carbohydrate-containing medication order rate declined from 0.69 to 0.35 orders per patient-day (absolute rate reduction 0.34, 95% confidence interval 0.25-0.43), corresponding to 256 inappropriate orders prevented. The alert fired 398 times and was accepted (i.e., the order was removed) 227 times for an overall acceptance rate of 57%.

Conclusions: Implementation of a clinical decision support alert at order-entry resulted in a sustained reduction in carbohydrate-containing medication orders for hospitalized patients on ketogenic diet without an increase in alert burden. Clinical decision support developed with user-centered design principles can improve patient safety for children on ketogenic diet by influencing prescriber behavior.
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February 2021

Acquiring new spatial intuitions: learning to reason about rotations.

Cogn Psychol 2005 Dec 13;51(4):285-333. Epub 2005 Sep 13.

Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, University of Louisville, KY 40292, USA.

There are certain simple rotations of objects that most people cannot reason about accurately. Reliable gaps in the understanding of a fundamental physical domain raise the question of how learning to reason in that domain might proceed. Using virtual reality techniques, this project investigated the nature of learning to reason across the domain of simple rotations. Learning consisted of the acquisition of spatial intuitions: there was encoding of useful spatiotemporal information in specific problem types and a gradual accumulation of this understanding across the domain. This pattern of learning through the accumulation of intuitions is especially interesting for rotational motion, in which an elegant domain-wide kinematics is available to support insightful learning. Individual ability to reason about rotations correlated highly with mastery motivation, skill in fluid reasoning, and skill in reasoning about spatial transformations. Thus, general cognitive advantages aided the understanding of individual rotations without guaranteeing immediate generalization across the domain.
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December 2005