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Introduction: Diabetes is the leading cause of end-stage renal disease (ESRD) in the United States (US), with 37 million having chronic kidney disease. Despite national guidelines recommendations for diabetic nephropathy screening with urine albumin-to-creatinine ratio (UACR), less than 50% receive full screening.

Our Internal Medicine residents led a quality improvement project to increase diabetic nephropathy screening rate with UACR in our resident clinic by 50% in one academic year.

Methods: We conducted the resident-led quality improvement project from July 2021 to April 2022. We reviewed the electronic medical records (EMR) from our clinic pre-intervention July 2020 to June 2021 and compared this to post intervention July 2021 to March 2022 determining the nephropathy screening rates in patients with diabetes. Our interventions included resident education, pre and post surveys to test foundational knowledge, adding UACR in the affordable laboratory order form and establishing normal reference range of UACR in the EMR.

Results: We collected 217 patients with diabetes, 27% were uninsured, 38% had Medicare/Medicaid and 90% identified as Hispanic. Comparing pre to post intervention, there was a significant change of 45 (20.7%) vs 71 (32.7%) patients screened for diabetic nephropathy with a UACR. The correct average score of knowledge-based questions was 82% on the pre survey, which increased to 88% in the post survey.

Conclusion: Our study showed promising results on improving diabetic nephropathy screening. The comprehensive approach including resident education about diabetic nephropathy screening with UACR and more so facilitating the order set in the EMR were key to achieve this goal.


© 2022 Greater Baltimore Medical Center.

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Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

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Journal of Community Hospital Internal Medicine Perspectives



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