A computerized ECG interpretation system was incorporated into a large ambulatory health care service. The central unit has several terminals located at various regional cardiological clinics. In each clinic, 80-120 ECG's are taken daily, of which 56% are interpreted as normal tracings. The interpretation system is currently utilized to separate automatically normal from abnormal tracings. Normal tracings are not re-checked by a cardiologist and the report is delivered directly to the family physician. In order to evaluate the reliability of the computer interpretation of normal ECG's (i.e., the percent of false-negative readings), 500 tracings interpreted by the program as normal were selected at random and read independently by three cardiologists. It was found that in 4.6% of the cases, additional remarks were supplemented to the computer statement by at least one of the cardiologists. Most of the computer-cardiologist disagreements were of limited clinical importance. It was concluded that this system could be used as an effective tool for simultaneously processing ECG's from several remote locations, serving large ambulatory populations. By using the assistance of the computer system, marked reduction in cardiologists' time and cost could be achieved.
|Number of pages||4|
|Journal||Medical Progress through Technology|
|State||Published - 1 Dec 1978|