SCAMPs are a quality improvement methodology that aim to optimize care delivery for patients iteratively over time. SCAMPs outline a data-backed, consensus-based, care pathway for a diverse patient population with a particular diagnosis or condition. Through the employment of an iterative process, SCAMPs aim to:
- Improve patient outcomes
- Reduce practice variation
- Reduce unnecessary resource utilization
The development of a SCAMP is carried out by a multi-disciplinary group of physician and nursing experts on a particular disorder, and can be summarized by the following eight-step process:
- Establish a foundation for sound clinical practice through literature review to compose a background position paper on a particular disorder and, if necessary, conduct a focused retrospective study to analyze current practice.
- Formulate Targeted Data Statements that address known gaps in knowledge regarding the management of the disorder; these become the focus of targeted data collection.
- Build expert consensus on the entry criteria, assessment recommendations, and management algorithms (decision trees) for the SCAMP.
- Develop data forms and IT tools that facilitate implementation of the SCAMP by providing management recommendations, in addition to collecting targeted clinical information and reasons for clinician diversions.
- Enroll patients in the SCAMP, which requires both proper identification of eligible patients and supplying the necessary data forms to providers at the level of the patient encounter.
- Enter targeted clinical data (collected from data forms and extracted from the electronic medical record) and reasons for clinician diversions into a database.
- Analyze SCAMP data and diversions using statistical approaches along with best clinical judgment, to assess the clinical and cost-effectiveness of recommendations.
- Periodically and iteratively revise the SCAMP based on this analysis and relevant updates from the medical literature.
One distinguishing feature of the SCAMPs process compared to other tools is active invitation and capturing of knowledge-based clinician deviations from the standard management plans, which are perceived to be a rich source of information and innovation. Based upon periodic review of the collected data and deviations, a SCAMP undergoes iterative and progressive improvement of its care-delivery algorithm.