Chronic Disease Management
As in other parts of Canada and the world, the prevalence of chronic disease in Newfoundland and Labrador (NL) is growing due to the combined impact of our aging population and other persistent lifestyle risk factors. It has been argued that a team approach to chronic disease management may improve patient health outcomes and may also ease the financial burden on the healthcare system. Adopting an interprofessional team-based approach to chronic disease management in NL would, however, require rethinking the current healthcare delivery system and would have implications for both patients and providers of healthcare in this province. In order to justify the potential increments in human and financial resources associated with such a change, decision makers would, before making such significant investments, require reliable research-based evidence on whether team-based management of chronic disease works and, if so, how such teams are best designed, implemented and sustained. Given the mounting health and economic burdens associated with chronic disease in this province, our decision-making partners in the provincial health system asked the Contextualized Health Research Synthesis Program (CHRSP) team to synthesize and contextualize the evidence on interprofessional teams for the management of chronic disease. The research team chose to focus their study on the management of individuals with diabetes and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) for several reasons: In 2006-7, NL had the highest age-standardized prevalence of diabetes of all provinces and territories in Canada (PHAC, 2009) and incidence rates are steadily increasing. The complications associated with uncontrolled diabetes place a considerable burden on patients and the healthcare system. COPD is a chronic, debilitating disease and is the leading cause of hospital admissions and readmissions for chronic disease across Canada (Canadian Thoracic Society, 2010). If managed incorrectly, the disease affects the quality of life of patients, and places considerable burden on the healthcare system. Lastly, in keeping with CHRSP methodologies, the availability of systematic reviews and health technology assessments (HTAs) for these two chronic diseases was thought to be sufficient to support a synthesis of research evidence.
30 Nov -0001
Strategic Research Theme
Well-being, Health and Biomedical Discovery