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Adherence to the Otitis Media with Effusion Clinical Practice Guideline By Providers in a United States Air Force Medical Treatment Facility

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Technical Report

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Uniformed Services University Of The Health Sciences Bethesda United States

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In the United States, office visits for otitis media increased by 150 percent between 1975 and 1990, to 24.5 million annually, with children under age 15 accounting for 81 percent of the visits Stool et al., 1994a, p. iii. In addition, children under age two had not only the highest rate of visits for otitis media, they also had the greatest increase in number of visits between 1975 and 1990 224 percent. Of significance, is the increase in attendance in group daycare facilities by young children during this same timeframe. Stool et al. estimated direct and indirect medical management costs clinic visits, medications, and parents time lost from work at 406 per patient visit and surgical management costs myringotomy with insertion of tympanostomy tubes at 2,174 per patient episode. Multiplying these costs by the number of visits results in a billion-dollar healthcare expenditure. Gates 1996 estimated the costs to be about five billion dollars annually. Cost is not the only factor important in the management of otitis media with effusion OME. Accurate diagnosis, along with safe and effective quality patient care, is the utmost concern.

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