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Expanding The INSPIRED COPD Outreach ProgramTM to the emergency department: a feasibility assessment

Authors Gillis D, Demmons J, Rocker G

Received 11 March 2017

Accepted for publication 19 April 2017

Published 29 May 2017 Volume 2017:12 Pages 1597—1604


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Richard Russell

Darcy Gillis,1 Jillian Demmons,1 Graeme Rocker1,2

1Division of Respirology, Department of Medicine, Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Centre, Nova Scotia Health Authority, Halifax, NS, Canada; 2Division of Respirology, Nova Scotia Health Authority, Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS, Canada

Background: The Halifax-based INSPIRED COPD Outreach Program™ is a facility-to-community home-based novel clinical initiative that through improved care transitions, self-management, and engagement in advance care planning has demonstrated a significant (60%–80%) reduction in health care utilization with substantial cost aversion. By assessing the feasibility of expanding INSPIRED into the emergency department (ED) we anticipated extending reach and potential for positive impact of INSPIRED to those with acute exacerbation of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (AECOPD) who avoid hospital admission.
Methods: Patients were eligible for the INSPIRED-ED study if >40 years of age, diagnosed with AECOPD and discharged from the ED, willing to be referred, community dwelling with at least one of: previous use of the ED services, admission to Intermediate Care Unit/Intensive Care Unit, or admission to hospital with AECOPD in the past year. We set feasibility objectives for referral rates, completion of action plans, advance care planning participation, and reduction in ED visit frequency.
Results: Referral rates were 0.5/week. Among eligible patients (n=174) 33 (19%) were referred of whom 15 (M=4, F=11) enrolled in INSPIRED-ED. Mean (SD) age was 68 (7) years, post-bronchdilator FEV1 44.2 (15.5) % predicted, and Medical Research Council (MRC) dyspnea score 3.8 (0.41). We met feasibility objectives for action plan and advance care planning completion. Frequency of subsequent ED visits fell by 54%. Mean (SD) Care Transition Measure (CTM-3) improved from 8.6 (2.0) to 11.3 (1.3), P=0.0004, and of 14 patients responding 12 (86%) found the program very helpful. An additional 34 patients were enrolled to our regular program from those referred but ineligible for INSPIRED-ED (n=27) or unwilling to participate (n=7).
Conclusions: INSPIRED-ED outcomes were generally positive, however referral and enrollment rates were lower than anticipated. Despite the potential of early self-management education, the ED may not be the ideal recruitment setting for home-based programs. Our findings underline the importance of conducting preliminary work to ascertain best settings for implementing new self-management education initiatives.

Keywords: Self-management education, community-based care, holistic COPD care, admission, readmission

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