Priorities and expectations of patients attending a multidisciplinary interstitial lung disease clinic.

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Journal Article
Respirology, 2021, 26, (1), pp. 80-86
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Background and objective The significant and progressive morbidity associated with ILD mean that patients often struggle with the impact of this disease on their QOL and independence. To date, no studies have investigated the importance of multidisciplinary care on patient experience in ILD. We aimed to determine the expectations and priorities of patients attending a tertiary referral centre multidisciplinary ILD clinic. In particular, we sought to learn how important the multidisciplinary element of the clinic was to patients and which aspects of the clinic were most valued. Methods An 18-item patient questionnaire was developed in conjunction with expert physicians and specialist nurses involved in the ILD clinic and sent to all patients on the centre's ILD registry at the time of the study (n = 240). Patients rated the importance of different aspects of their experience of attending the clinic. Data collected were analysed using descriptive statistics. Comparisons across disease severity were made using two-sided Z-tests for independent proportions. Results A total of 100 respondents comprised the study group. Almost all respondents valued the multidisciplinary aspect of the clinic. Obtaining an accurate diagnosis and improving their disease understanding was most important to respondents. The importance of the ILD specialist nurse for both education and support increased with worsening disease severity. Conclusion Our results suggest that a multidisciplinary approach to the management of ILD with additional focus on patient education, as well as tailoring care to disease severity, is a plausible pathway to improving the patient experience with ILD.
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