Objective

This study uses a pre- and post-training program evaluation of chiropractic interns to (1) describe changes in their frequency of occupational history taking before and after a 1-hour training and (2) to document the attitudes and beliefs regarding occupational health and history taking.

Methods

All chiropractic interns at 1 clinic location completed questionnaires assessing their attitudes and perceptions regarding documenting the occupational history of their patients each trimester they were enrolled in the study. Each intern enrolled in the study for 2 or more trimesters participated in a 1-hour-long training session on taking an occupational history. The supervising clinician independently evaluated charting behaviors of interns for the duration of the study.

Results

The supervising clinician assessed 20 interns' level of documenting occupational history for 202 new patient or reexamination visits. A majority of interns (85% at baseline) were interested in occupational health, and 80% believed that occupational history taking was “very important.” Intern charting behaviors increased after training related to documentation of past occupation (62.9% from 32.4%) and relating the chief complaint to work (59.7% from 30.0%). Detailed occupational history taking remained low throughout the study but demonstrated a doubling in documentation after training (16.1% from 8.6%).

Conclusion

Chiropractic interns and clinicians should be adequately trained in occupational health history documentation practices as they are likely to care for work-related injuries. Short training modules appear to be effective in demonstrating small changes in documentation related to occupational history taking.

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Author notes

Dana Madigan is an assistant professor at the National University of Health Sciences in the Department of Research and Institutional Effectiveness and a research assistant professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago, School of Public Health, Division of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences (200 E Roosevelt Road, Lombard, IL 60148; dmadig2@uic.edu; dmadigan@nuhs.edu). Erin Quinlan-Ruof is an assistant professor at the National University of Health Sciences Department of Clinical Practice (200 E Roosevelt Road, Lombard, Illinois 60148; equinlan@nuhs.edu). Jerrilyn Cambron is the dean of Research and Allied Health Sciences and a professor at the National University of Health Sciences (200 E Roosevelt Road, Lombard, Illinois 60148; jcambron@nuhs.edu). Linda Forst is a professor and senior associate dean at the University of Illinois at Chicago, School of Public Health, Division of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences (1603 W Taylor Street, Chicago, Illinois 60612; lforst@uic.edu). Joseph Zanoni is a research assistant professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago, School of Public Health, Division of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences (1603 W Taylor Street, Chicago, Illinois 60612; jzanoni@uic.edu). Lorraine M Conroy is a professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago, School of Public Health, Division of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences (1603 W Taylor Street, Chicago, Illinois 60612; lconroy@uic.edu). Crystal Patil is a professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago, College of Nursing, Department of Women, Children & Family Health Science (845 S Damen Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60612; cpatil@uic.edu). Lee Friedman is an associate professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago, School of Public Health, Division of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences (1603 W Taylor Street, Chicago, Illinois 60612; lfried1@uic.edu). This article was received September 25, 2019, revised December 20, 2019 and March 19, 2020, and accepted May 17, 2020.

Concept development: DM, EQR, LSF, JAC, LF, JZ, LMC. Design: DM, EQR, LSF, JAC, LF, JZ, LMC. Supervision: DM, LSF, JAC. Data collection/processing: DM, EQR. Analysis/interpretation: DM, LSF, CLP. Literature search: DM. Writing: DM, LSF. Critical review: DM, LSF, JAC, LF, JZ, LMC, CLP.