Over the last decade, patient-centred care (PCC) has become a focus within rheumatology and in the broader healthcare community. Patient-centred care puts patients and their families at the forefront of the care that they receive. According to the British Columbia Patient-Centred Care Framework, patient-centred care incorporates the following key components:
- Shared and informed decision-making;
- An enhanced experience of health care;
- Improved information and understand; and,
- The advancement of prevention and health promotion activities.
This approach emphasizes patient-voice, information sharing and shared decision making – ensuring there is a collaboration between the patient, their family, and their health care provider(s). There should be a balance between the health professional’s knowledge and the patient’s personal knowledge, experiences and preferences. PCC is based around team work rather than a potentially unbalanced healthcare provider-patient relationship. PCC has been shown to increase patient satisfaction, improve self-management, and ultimately lead to better health outcomes. Health authorities, patient advocate groups, and researchers throughout Canada are working to make patient centred care a priority.
There are several challenges to delivering PCC on a systemic level. It requires a significant shift to the way in which the healthcare system operates, and perhaps more importantly, a significant shift in the culture of health care. An effective way of transitioning to PCC is to ensure that the next generation of health professionals have sufficient training in the area. An effective way to achieve this is to have students learn directly from patient advocates and patient educators. In October, the Pharmacy School at the University of British Columbia (UBC) led by example by doing exactly that.
The European League Against Rheumatism Annual Congress is happening from June 8-11 in London, UK. Here is the latest press release highlighting patient-focused efforts at the conference this year:
European League Against Rheumatism Annual Congress
London, United Kingdom, 8-11 June 2016
NEW PATIENT-FOCUSED INITIATIVES SET TO OPTIMISE CARE OF RHEUMATIC DISEASES
Better understanding of the patient perspective and actively encouraging patient participation is key
London, United Kingdom, 8 June 2016: Results from patient-focused initiatives unveiled at the European League Against Rheumatism Annual Congress (EULAR 2016) have highlighted the importance of seeking and better understanding the patient perspective, as well as actively encouraging patient participation, to optimise care of rheumatic diseases.
Findings from these patient-focused initiatives show:
- Although many patients are satisfied with their RA treatment, non-adherence persists and many would like to discuss and/or change their current prescribed treatment, but don’t discuss it through fear of their case being compromised*
- How patients with rheumatic diseases and their HCPs highly value patient participation in multidisciplinary team conferences, with treatment plans developed in partnership encouraging greater patient commitment and better outcomes**
- How patients can usefully be involved in updating clinical training programmes by making healthcare providers and medical students more aware of the patients’ perspective as an important step towards optimizing care in rheumatoid arthritis (RA).***Patient survey highlights importance of treatment conversations between patients and HCPs
Patient survey highlights importance of treatment conversations between patients and HCPs
Although many patients are satisfied with their RA treatment, non-adherence persists and many would like to discuss and/or change their currently prescribed treatment, but don’t discuss it through fear of their care being compromised. This was the main finding from a patient survey, developed by the RA NarRAtive global advisory panel, which was designed to better understand the perspective of patients regarding management of their RA and interactions with their physicians.*
The RA NarRAtive initiative is the first survey of its kind to simultaneously evaluate the patient/HCP relationship and communication, as well as patients’ experience and satisfaction with treatment and disease management.More than 3,600 adults with RA from 13 countries responded to the patient-based survey. Almost one-half of RA patients under HCP care acknowledged that dialogue with their physician would optimise management of their condition. However, around six out of every ten respondents felt uncomfortable raising treatment/disease concerns to their HCP, feeling anxiety about raising too many questions and consequentially being perceived as a difficult patient.Although the current treatment goal for physicians is to achieve clinical remission or low disease activity,**** patients most commonly defined successful treatment as a reduction of pain and/or joint swelling/inflammation (81%) and improvements in quality of life (77%).
“Further understanding the responses from this survey will be important to facilitate communication between patients and HCPs, with the ultimate aim of improving treatment outcomes,” said lead author Ms. Cheryl Koehn, President of Arthritis Consumer Experts, Vancouver, Canada.
Of the 2,139 RA patients receiving medication, justover one-third admitted to not taking it as prescribed. Overall, just over three-quarters of patients currently taking RA medication were satisfied with their treatment regimen; however, 70% desired fewer medications, more than one-half were worried their medications would fail, and more than one-half wanted more medication choices. Aspects of current prescribed treatment that RA patients would most like to change included: number and frequency of medications (35%); side effects (34%); access to, or cost of treatment (30%); availability of mono therapy (25%); alternative to subcutaneous injections (18%); inconvenience or limitations from medication (16%); and mode of administration (12%).
Please click here to read the full press release.
* EULAR 2016; London: Abstract OP0248
**EULAR 2016; London: Abstract OP0269-HPR
***EULAR 2016; London: Abstract OP0014-PARE
****Smolen JS, Breedveld FC, Burmeister GR, et al. Treating rheumatoid arthritis to target: 2014 update of the recommendations of an international task force. Ann Rheum Dis 2016; 75: 3-15.