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Speech Recognition Software Improves Radiology Report Turn-Around Times

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Radiology report turn-around times improve with introduction of speech recognition software.

Speech recognition software (SRS) helps improve radiology report turn-around times in community-based hospital practices, according to a study in the Journal of the American College of Radiology.

Researchers from Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston, Mass., evaluated the utility and effectiveness of SRS in a 150-bed community hospital setting without a radiology training program. Benefits of using SRS have been reported in large academic practices.

The SRS was implemented between May 2011 and July 2011 and report turn-around times and normalized radiologist productivity were assessed before the software was implemented and for five months. The researchers also assessed trend in productivity.

The results showed that median and 80th to 95th percentile report turn-around times decreased substantially following introduction of the SRS (median, from 24 to one hour; 80th percentile, from 60 to 10 hours; 95th percentile, from 165 to 33 hours). The researchers did not detect a significant trend in report turn-around times beyond that of initiation of the software. Normalized radiologist productivity was stable throughout the study period, the authors noted.

The researchers concluded that with implementation of the SRS, there was a 24-fold improvement in median report turn-around time in this setting, without affecting normalized radiologist productivity.

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