Published: 25 March 2022

Authors: David H. Au, Margaret P. Collins, Douglas B. Berger, Paula G. Carvalho, Karin M. Nelson, Lynn F. Reinke, Richard B. Goodman, Rosemary Adamson, Deborah M. Woo, Peter J. Rise, Scott S. Coggeshall, Robert B. Plumley, Eric M. Epler, Brianna R. Moss, Jennifer A. McDowell, and William G. Weppner

Source: This abstract has been sourced from NZ Respiratory Research Review Issue 204


    Rationale: Patients discharged from the hospital for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) exacerbation have impaired quality of life and frequent readmission and death. Clinical trials to reduce readmission demonstrate inconsistent results, including some demonstrating potential harms.

    Objectives: We tested whether a pragmatic proactive interdisciplinary and virtual review of patients discharged after hospitalization for COPD exacerbation would improve quality of life, using the Clinical COPD Questionnaire, and reduce all-cause 180-day readmission and/or mortality.

    Methods: We performed a stepped-wedge clinical trial. We enrolled primary care providers and their patients after hospital discharge for COPD at two Department of Veterans Affairs medical centers and 10 outpatient clinics. A multidisciplinary team reviewed health records and developed treatment recommendations delivered to primary care providers via E-consult. We facilitated uptake by entering recommendations as unsigned orders that could be accepted, modified, or canceled. Providers and patients made all final treatment decisions.

    Measurements and Main Results: We enrolled 365 primary care providers. Over a 30-month period, 352 patients met eligibility criteria, with 191 (54.3%) patients participating in the control and 161 (45.7%) in the intervention. The intervention led to clinically significant better Clinical COPD Questionnaire scores (−0.47; 95% confidence interval [CI], −0.85 to −0.09; 52.6% missing) but did not reduce 180-day readmission and/or mortality (adjusted odds ratio, 0.83; 95% CI, 0.49 to 1.38), in part because of wide CIs. Among the 161 patients in the intervention group, we entered 519 recommendations as unsigned orders, of which 401 (77.3%) were endorsed.

    Conclusions: A pragmatic health system–level intervention that delivered proactive specialty supported care improved quality of life but did not reduce 180-day readmission or death.

    Link to abstract

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