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June 3, 1983

Medical Grand Rounds and Laboratory Use

Author Affiliations

Vancouver General Hospital and University of British Columbia

JAMA. 1983;249(21):2890. doi:10.1001/jama.1983.03330450022012

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To the Editor.—  It is generally agreed that medical grand rounds are a useful educational medium for physicians. However, it is not known whether these rounds have a permanent or temporary teaching effect. I studied one aspect of this teaching value, namely, the use of laboratory tests. Some years ago, when the topic for rounds was high-density lipoprotein cholesterol testing, the number of requests for this test escalated. A few months ago, magnesium testing was the topic for rounds. To determine what effect this would have on the test-ordering pattern for serum magnesium testing, I set up a study wherein the number of serum magnesium tests performed on inpatients at our hospital was recorded for a period of three weeks before and ten weeks after the rounds (Vancouver General Hospital in British Columbia is a 1,000-bed, acute-care, tertiary referral center).The average daily number of serum magnesium test requests before