Effect of educational and electronic medical record interventions on food allergy management

Ari Zelig, Ilana Harwayne-Gidansky, Allison Gault, Julie Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Background: The growing prevalence of food allergies indicates a responsibility among primary care providers to ensure that their patients receive accurate diagnosis and management. Objective: To improve physician knowledge and management of food allergies by implementing educational and electronic medical record interventions. Methods: Pre- and posttest scores of pediatric residents and faculty were analyzed to assess the effectiveness of an educational session designed to improve knowledge of food allergy management. One year later, a best practice advisory was implemented in the electronic medical record to alert providers to consider allergy referral whenever a diagnosis code for food allergy or epinephrine autoinjector prescription was entered. A review of charts 6 months before and 6 months after each intervention was completed to determine the impact of both interventions. Outcome measurements included referrals to an allergy clinic, prescription of self-injectable epinephrine, and documentation that written emergency action plans were provided. Results: There was a significant increase in test scores immediately after the educational intervention (mean, 56.2 versus 84.3%; p < 0.001). Posttest scores remained significantly higher than preintervention scores 6 months later (mean score, 68.0 versus 56.2%; p = 0.006). Although knowledge improved, there was no significant difference in the percentage of patients who were provided allergy referral, were prescribed an epinephrine autoinjector, or were given an emergency action plan before and after both interventions. Conclusion: Neither intervention resulted in improvements in the management of children with food allergies at our pediatrics clinic. Further studies are needed to identify effective strategies to improve management of food allergies by primary care physicians.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)404-408
Number of pages5
JournalAllergy and Asthma Proceedings
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2016


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