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Activity Number: 156
Type: Topic Contributed
Date/Time: Monday, July 30, 2012 : 10:30 AM to 12:20 PM
Sponsor: Section on Statistical Education
Abstract - #305487
Title: Getting the Gist of Health Risks
Author(s): Tanner Caverly*+ and Daniel D. Matlock and Allan Prochazka and Ingrid Binswanger and Jean Kutner
Companies: University of Colorado Denver and University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine and University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine and University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine and University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine
Address: 13199 E. Montview Blvd, Aurora, CO, 80042, United States
Keywords: numeracy ; clinician ; medical education ; statistical literacy ; health statistics

We define Clinician Numeracy (CN) as "the ability to use numbers and numeric concepts in the context of taking care of patients." CN includes 3 domains: primary numeric skills, applied numeracy, and interpretive numeracy. Some key interpretive skills - understanding the difference between relative and absolute risk and understanding how prevalence of a disease influences the value of a test - have been shown to be important for clinical judgment. A modern theory of medical decision making with a growing body of support (fuzzy trace theory) asserts that medical decisions are most often based on gist-based intuition or "simple, bottom-line representations of the meaning of information or experience." We present a conceptual model that utilizes this theory to show how CN might be related to clinician decision making and health outcomes via the 'risk gist.'

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