Electronic Medical Record Tobacco Use Vital Sign
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Division of Medical Informatics, Department of Medicine, New Jersey Medical School, USA
University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Newark, USA
Department of Medicine, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, USA
Publication date: 2004-06-15
Corresponding author
John W. NorrisIII   

185 South Orange Avenue, I506, Newark, New Jersey 07103
Tobacco Induced Diseases 2004;2(June):109
Determination of the prevalence of tobacco use and impact of tobacco prevention/treatment efforts in an electronic medical record enabled practice utilizing a defined tobacco vital sign variable.

Design and Measurements:
Retrospective cohort study utilizing patient data recorded in an electronic medical record database between July 15, 2001, and May 31, 2003. Patient-reported tobacco use status was obtained for each of 6,771 patients during the pre-provider period of their 24,824 visits during the study period with the recorder blinded to past tobacco use status entries.

An overall current tobacco use prevalence of 27.1% was found during the study period. Tobacco use status was recorded in 96% of visits. Comparison of initial to final visit tobacco use status demonstrates a consistency rate of 75.0% declaring no change in tobacco status in the 4,522 patients with two or more visits. An 8.6% net tobacco use decline was seen for the practice (p value < 0.001)

Self reported tobacco use status as a vital sign embedded within the workflow of an electronic medical record enabled practice was a quantitative tool for determination of tobacco use prevalence and a measuring stick of risk prevention/intervention impact.

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