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Uruguayan Medical Journal

ISSN: 1688-0390

Vol.34 - Nº 3 - Set. 2018

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Level of agreement between trained and non-trained personnel in triage with a computerized system

Rev Med Urug 2018; 34: 133-138
Full text (spanish) |  Full text (spanish) (New windows, pdf) | Abstract


"Triage" –the process of quickly examining patients according to their priority of treatment– is a tool that has been recognized for institutional and administrative management in the Emergency Departments(1). Eight years after its introduction, the Clinicas Hospital has an automatized and normalized process which has become the organizational bases to address consultations in a qualified manner.

The study aimed to compare triage done by health professionals who had been trained and the one done by health professionals with no prior training of IT support, to the computerized system, comparing it with results in real time.

A higher level of agreement between trained health professionals with the results in the computerized system, when compared to professionals who lacked training was observed.

The trained observer with the most matching results achieved 55.9% of agreements with the computerized triage system (9 out of 34), and the observer with the least matching results obtained 32.4% of similarities (11 out of 34). Global agreement level was 41.5% in the group of professionals who were not experts. Experienced observers accounted for 79.4% of equal results and a d kappa index of 0.695, whereas trained observers had 0.19 and 0.23 Kappa indexes when compared to the computerized system and the experiences observer, respectively. Therefore, we find that a short training in triage does not increase agreement when compared to the computerized system and it does increase when we compare it to triage by an experienced observer. These results should be validated in larger series of patients.