Publications by authors named "Daniela C Gonçalves-Bradley"

20 Publications

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Routine provision of feedback from patient-reported outcome measurements to healthcare providers and patients in clinical practice.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2021 Oct 12;10:CD011589. Epub 2021 Oct 12.

Health Services & Policy Research, Exeter Collaboration for Academic Primary Care (APEx), NIHR School for Primary Care Research, NIHR ARC South West Peninsula (PenARC), University of Exeter, Exeter, UK.

Background: Patient-reported outcomes measures (PROMs) assess a patient's subjective appraisal of health outcomes from their own perspective. Despite hypothesised benefits that feedback  on PROMs can support decision-making in clinical practice and improve outcomes, there is uncertainty surrounding the effectiveness of PROMs feedback.

Objectives: To assess the effects of PROMs feedback to patients, or healthcare workers, or both on patient-reported health outcomes and processes of care.

Search Methods: We searched MEDLINE, Embase, CENTRAL, two other databases and two clinical trial registries on 5 October 2020. We searched grey literature and consulted experts in the field.

Selection Criteria: Two review authors independently screened and selected studies for inclusion. We included randomised trials directly comparing the effects on outcomes and processes of care of PROMs feedback to healthcare professionals and patients, or both with the impact of not providing such information.

Data Collection And Analysis: Two groups of two authors independently extracted data from the included studies and evaluated study quality. We followed standard methodological procedures expected by Cochrane and EPOC. We used the GRADE approach to assess the certainty of the evidence. We conducted meta-analyses of the results where possible.

Main Results: We identified 116 randomised trials which assessed the effectiveness of PROMs feedback in improving processes or outcomes of care, or both in a broad range of disciplines including psychiatry, primary care, and oncology. Studies were conducted across diverse ambulatory primary and secondary care settings in North America, Europe and Australasia. A total of 49,785 patients were included across all the studies. The certainty of the evidence varied between very low and moderate. Many of the studies included in the review were at risk of performance and detection bias. The evidence suggests moderate certainty that PROMs feedback probably improves quality of life (standardised mean difference (SMD) 0.15, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.05 to 0.26; 11 studies; 2687 participants), and leads to an increase in patient-physician communication (SMD 0.36, 95% CI 0.21 to 0.52; 5 studies; 658 participants), diagnosis and notation (risk ratio (RR) 1.73, 95% CI 1.44 to 2.08; 21 studies; 7223 participants), and disease control (RR 1.25, 95% CI 1.10 to 1.41; 14 studies; 2806 participants). The intervention probably makes little or no difference for general health perceptions (SMD 0.04, 95% CI -0.17 to 0.24; 2 studies, 552 participants; low-certainty evidence), social functioning (SMD 0.02, 95% CI -0.06 to 0.09; 15 studies; 2632 participants; moderate-certainty evidence), and pain (SMD 0.00, 95% CI -0.09 to 0.08; 9 studies; 2386 participants; moderate-certainty evidence). We are uncertain about the effect of PROMs feedback on physical functioning (14 studies; 2788 participants) and mental functioning (34 studies; 7782 participants), as well as fatigue (4 studies; 741 participants), as the certainty of the evidence was very low. We did not find studies reporting on adverse effects defined as distress following or related to PROM completion.

Authors' Conclusions: PROM feedback probably produces moderate improvements in communication between healthcare professionals and patients as well as in diagnosis and notation, and disease control, and small improvements to quality of life. Our confidence in the effects is limited by the risk of bias, heterogeneity and small number of trials conducted to assess outcomes of interest. It is unclear whether   many of these improvements are clinically meaningful or sustainable in the long term. There is a need for more high-quality studies in this area, particularly studies which employ cluster designs and utilise techniques to maintain allocation concealment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD011589.pub2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8509115PMC
October 2021

The Challenges of Outcomes-Based Contract Implementation for Medicines in Europe.

Pharmacoeconomics 2021 Sep 4. Epub 2021 Sep 4.

Value-Based Health and Care Academy, School of Management, Swansea University, Swansea, UK.

Objectives: The aim was to outline the challenges of implementing outcomes-based contracts (OBCs) in Europe.

Methods: A scoping review was conducted, building on the searches of a previous systematic review and updating them for December 2017 until May 2021. The combined results were screened, based on inclusion and exclusion criteria. All identified studies published in the English language that described specific OBC schemes for medicines in European countries were included. Insights into the challenges of OBCs were extracted and analysed to develop a conceptual framework.

Results: Ten articles from the previous systematic review matched our inclusion criteria, along with 14 articles from electronic searches. Analysis of these 24 articles and classification of the challenges revealed that there are multiple barriers that must be overcome if OBCs that benefit all stakeholders are going to be adopted widely across Europe. These challenges were grouped according to five key themes: negotiation framework; outcomes; data; administration and implementation; and laws and regulation.

Conclusions: If the promise of OBCs is to be fully realised in Europe, there remain major challenges that need to be overcome by all stakeholders working in partnership. The overlapping and interconnected nature of these challenges highlights the complexity of OBC arrangements.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40273-021-01070-1DOI Listing
September 2021

Aerobic, resistance, and mind-body exercise are equivalent to mitigate symptoms of depression in older adults: A systematic review and network meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials.

F1000Res 2020 13;9:1325. Epub 2020 Nov 13.

School of Health and Life Sciences, Federation University, Ballarat, Victoria, 3350, Australia.

Exercise has been identified as an allied health strategy that can support the management of depression in older adults, yet the relative effectiveness for different exercise modalities is unknown. To meet this gap in knowledge, we present a systematic review and network meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials (RCTs) to examine the head-to-head effectiveness of aerobic, resistance, and mind-body exercise to mitigate depressive symptoms in adults aged ≥ 65 years. A PRISMA-NMA compliant review was undertaken on RCTs from inception to September 12 , 2019. PubMed, Web of Science, CINAHL, Health Source: Nursing/Academic Edition, PsycARTICLES, PsycINFO, and SPORTDiscus were systematically searched for eligible RCTs enrolling adults with a mean age ≥ 65 years, comparing one or more exercise intervention arms, and which used valid measures of depressive symptomology. Comparative effectiveness was evaluated using network meta-analysis to combine direct and indirect evidence, controlling for inherent variation in trial control groups. The systematic review included 82 RCTs, with 69 meeting eligibility for the network meta-analysis ( = 5,379 participants). Pooled analysis found each exercise type to be effective compared with controls (Hedges' = -0.27 to -0.51). Relative head-to-head comparisons were statistically comparable between exercise types: resistance versus aerobic (Hedges' = -0.06, = -0.91, 0.79), mind-body versus aerobic (Hedges' = -0.12, = -0.95, 0.72), mind-body versus resistance (Hedges' = -0.06, = -0.90, 0.79). High levels of compliance were demonstrated for each exercise treatment. Aerobic, resistance, and mind-body exercise demonstrate equivalence to mitigate symptoms of depression in older adults aged ≥ 65 years, with comparably encouraging levels of compliance to exercise treatment. These findings coalesce with previous findings in clinically depressed older adults to encourage personal preference when prescribing exercise for depressive symptoms in older adults. PROSPERO CRD42018115866 (23/11/2018).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.12688/f1000research.27123.2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8191520.2PMC
August 2021

Hospital at home: home-based end-of-life care.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2021 03 16;3:CD009231. Epub 2021 Mar 16.

Nuffield Department of Medicine and Sir Michael Sobell House, Churchill Hospital, Oxford, UK.

Background: The policy several countries is to provide people with a terminal illness the choice of dying at home; this is supported by surveys that indicate that the general public and people with a terminal illness would prefer to receive end-of-life care at home. This is the fifth update of the original review.

Objectives: To determine if providing home-based end-of-life care reduces the likelihood of dying in hospital and what effect this has on patients' symptoms, quality of life, health service costs and caregivers compared with inpatient hospital or hospice care.

Search Methods: We searched CENTRAL, Ovid MEDLINE(R), Embase, CINAHL, and clinical trials registries to 18 March 2020. We checked the reference lists of systematic reviews. For included studies, we checked the reference lists and performed a forward search using ISI Web of Science. We handsearched palliative care journals indexed by ISI Web of Science for online first references.

Selection Criteria: Randomised controlled trials evaluating the effectiveness of home-based end-of-life care with inpatient hospital or hospice care for people aged 18 years and older.

Data Collection And Analysis: Two review authors independently extracted data and assessed study quality. When appropriate, we combined published data for dichotomous outcomes using a fixed-effect Mantel-Haenszel meta-analysis to calculate risk ratios (RR) with 95% confidence intervals (CI). When combining outcome data was not possible, we reported the results from individual studies.

Main Results: We included four randomised trials and found no new studies from the search in March 2020. Home-based end-of-life care increased the likelihood of dying at home compared with usual care (RR 1.31, 95% CI 1.12 to 1.52; 2 trials, 539 participants; I = 25%; high-certainty evidence). Admission to hospital varied among the trials (range of RR 0.62, 95% CI 0.48 to 0.79, to RR 2.61, 95% CI 1.50 to 4.55). The effect on patient outcomes and control of symptoms was uncertain. Home-based end-of-life care may slightly improve patient satisfaction at one-month follow-up, with little or no difference at six-month follow-up (2 trials; low-certainty evidence). The effect on caregivers (2 trials; very low-certainty evidence), staff (1 trial; very low-certainty evidence) and health service costs was uncertain (2 trials, very low-certainty evidence).

Authors' Conclusions: The evidence included in this review supports the use of home-based end-of-life care programmes for increasing the number of people who will die at home. Research that assesses the impact of home-based end-of-life care on caregivers and admissions to hospital would be a useful addition to the evidence base, and might inform the delivery of these services.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD009231.pub3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8092626PMC
March 2021

Impact of viral epidemic outbreaks on mental health of healthcare workers: a rapid systematic review and meta-analysis.

J Affect Disord 2020 12 23;277:347-357. Epub 2020 Aug 23.

Nuffield Department of Population Health, University of Oxford, UK.

Background: This study aimed at examining the impact of providing healthcare during health emergencies caused by viral epidemic outbreaks on healthcare workers' (HCWs) mental health; to identify factors associated with worse impact, and; to assess the available evidence base regarding interventions to reduce such impact.

Method: Rapid systematic review. We searched MEDLINE, Embase, and PsycINFO (inception to August 2020). We pooled data using random-effects meta-analyses to estimate the prevalence of specific mental health problems, and used GRADE to ascertain the certainty of evidence.

Results: We included 117 studies. The pooled prevalence was higher for acute stress disorder (40% (95%CI 39 to 41%)), followed by anxiety (30%, (30 to 31%)), burnout (28% (26 to 31%)), depression (24% (24 to 25%)), and post-traumatic stress disorder (13% (13 to 14%)). We identified factors associated with the likelihood of developing those problems, including sociodemographic (younger age and female gender), social (lack of social support, stigmatization), and occupational (working in a high-risk environment, specific occupational roles, and lower levels of specialised training and job experience) factors. Four studies reported interventions for frontline HCW: two educational interventions increased confidence in pandemic self-efficacy and in interpersonal problems solving (very low certainty), whereas one multifaceted intervention improved anxiety, depression, and sleep quality (very low certainty).

Limitations: We only searched three databases, and the initial screening was undertaken by a single reviewer.

Conclusion: Given the very limited evidence regarding the impact of interventions to tackle mental health problems in HCWs, the risk factors identified represent important targets for future interventions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2020.08.034DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7443314PMC
December 2020

Mobile technologies to support healthcare provider to healthcare provider communication and management of care.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2020 08 18;8:CD012927. Epub 2020 Aug 18.

Nuffield Department of Population Health, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK.

Background: The widespread use of mobile technologies can potentially expand the use of telemedicine approaches to facilitate communication between healthcare providers, this might increase access to specialist advice and improve patient health outcomes.

Objectives: To assess the effects of mobile technologies versus usual care for supporting communication and consultations between healthcare providers on healthcare providers' performance, acceptability and satisfaction, healthcare use, patient health outcomes, acceptability and satisfaction, costs, and technical difficulties.

Search Methods: We searched CENTRAL, MEDLINE, Embase and three other databases from 1 January 2000 to 22 July 2019. We searched clinical trials registries, checked references of relevant systematic reviews and included studies, and contacted topic experts.

Selection Criteria: Randomised trials comparing mobile technologies to support healthcare provider to healthcare provider communication and consultations compared with usual care.

Data Collection And Analysis: We followed standard methodological procedures expected by Cochrane and EPOC. We used the GRADE approach to assess the certainty of the evidence.

Main Results: We included 19 trials (5766 participants when reported), most were conducted in high-income countries. The most frequently used mobile technology was a mobile phone, often accompanied by training if it was used to transfer digital images. Trials recruited participants with different conditions, and interventions varied in delivery, components, and frequency of contact. We judged most trials to have high risk of performance bias, and approximately half had a high risk of detection, attrition, and reporting biases. Two studies reported data on technical problems, reporting few difficulties. Mobile technologies used by primary care providers to consult with hospital specialists We assessed the certainty of evidence for this group of trials as moderate to low. Mobile technologies: - probably make little or no difference to primary care providers following guidelines for people with chronic kidney disease (CKD; 1 trial, 47 general practices, 3004 participants); - probably reduce the time between presentation and management of individuals with skin conditions, people with symptoms requiring an ultrasound, or being referred for an appointment with a specialist after attending primary care (4 trials, 656 participants); - may reduce referrals and clinic visits among people with some skin conditions, and increase the likelihood of receiving retinopathy screening among people with diabetes, or an ultrasound in those referred with symptoms (9 trials, 4810 participants when reported); - probably make little or no difference to patient-reported quality of life and health-related quality of life (2 trials, 622 participants) or to clinician-assessed clinical recovery (2 trials, 769 participants) among individuals with skin conditions; - may make little or no difference to healthcare provider (2 trials, 378 participants) or participant acceptability and satisfaction (4 trials, 972 participants) when primary care providers consult with dermatologists; - may make little or no difference for total or expected costs per participant for adults with some skin conditions or CKD (6 trials, 5423 participants). Mobile technologies used by emergency physicians to consult with hospital specialists about people attending the emergency department We assessed the certainty of evidence for this group of trials as moderate. Mobile technologies: - probably slightly reduce the consultation time between emergency physicians and hospital specialists (median difference -12 minutes, 95% CI -19 to -7; 1 trial, 345 participants); - probably reduce participants' length of stay in the emergency department by a few minutes (median difference -30 minutes, 95% CI -37 to -25; 1 trial, 345 participants). We did not identify trials that reported on providers' adherence, participants' health status and well-being, healthcare provider and participant acceptability and satisfaction, or costs. Mobile technologies used by community health workers or home-care workers to consult with clinic staff We assessed the certainty of evidence for this group of trials as moderate to low. Mobile technologies: - probably make little or no difference in the number of outpatient clinic and community nurse consultations for participants with diabetes or older individuals treated with home enteral nutrition (2 trials, 370 participants) or hospitalisation of older individuals treated with home enteral nutrition (1 trial, 188 participants); - may lead to little or no difference in mortality among people living with HIV (RR 0.82, 95% CI 0.55 to 1.22) or diabetes (RR 0.94, 95% CI 0.28 to 3.12) (2 trials, 1152 participants); - may make little or no difference to participants' disease activity or health-related quality of life in participants with rheumatoid arthritis (1 trial, 85 participants); - probably make little or no difference for participant acceptability and satisfaction for participants with diabetes and participants with rheumatoid arthritis (2 trials, 178 participants). We did not identify any trials that reported on providers' adherence, time between presentation and management, healthcare provider acceptability and satisfaction, or costs.

Authors' Conclusions: Our confidence in the effect estimates is limited. Interventions including a mobile technology component to support healthcare provider to healthcare provider communication and management of care may reduce the time between presentation and management of the health condition when primary care providers or emergency physicians use them to consult with specialists, and may increase the likelihood of receiving a clinical examination among participants with diabetes and those who required an ultrasound. They may decrease the number of people attending primary care who are referred to secondary or tertiary care in some conditions, such as some skin conditions and CKD. There was little evidence of effects on participants' health status and well-being, satisfaction, or costs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD012927.pub2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7437392PMC
August 2020

Comparative effectiveness of three exercise types to treat clinical depression in older adults: A systematic review and network meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials.

Ageing Res Rev 2020 03 11;58:100999. Epub 2019 Dec 11.

School of Health and Life Sciences, Federation University, Ballarat, Victoria, Australia.

Background: Few studies have directly compared the effects of different exercise therapies on clinical depression in older adults. Thus, we conducted a systematic review and network meta-analysis of current evidence from randomised controlled trials (RCTs) to compare the effectiveness of three major exercise types (aerobic, resistance, and mind-body exercise) in clinically depressed older adults.

Methods: We followed PRISMA-NMA guidelines and searched databases for eligible RCTs (inception - September 12, 2019). RCTs were eligible if they included clinically depressed adults aged >65 years, implemented one or more exercise therapy arms using aerobic, resistance, or mind-body exercise, and assessed depressive symptoms at baseline and follow-up using a validated clinical questionnaire.

Results: A network meta-analysis was performed on 15 eligible RCTs comprising 596 participants (321 treatment and 275 controls), including aerobic (n = 6), resistance (n = 5), and mind-body (n = 4) exercise trials. Compared with controls, mind-body exercise showed the largest improvement on depressive symptoms (g = -0.87 to -1.38), followed by aerobic exercise (g = -0.51 to -1.02), and resistance exercise (g = -0.41 to -0.92). Notably, there were no statistically significant differences between exercise types: aerobic versus resistance (g = -0.10, PrI = -2.23, 2.03), mind-body versus aerobic (g = -0.36, PrI = -2.69, 1.97), or mind-body versus resistance (g = -0.46, PrI = -2.75, 1.83).

Conclusions: These findings should guide optimal exercise prescription for allied health professionals and stakeholders in clinical geriatrics. Notably, clinically depressed older adults may be encouraged to self-select their preferred exercise type in order to achieve therapeutic benefit on symptoms of depression. In coalition with high levels of compliance, these data provide encouraging evidence for the antidepressant effect of either aerobic, resistance, or mind-body exercise as effective treatment adjucts for older adults presenting with clinical depression.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.arr.2019.100999DOI Listing
March 2020

Interventions to change the behaviour of health professionals and the organisation of care to promote weight reduction in children and adults with overweight or obesity.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2017 11 30;11:CD000984. Epub 2017 Nov 30.

Division for Health Services, Norwegian Institute of Public Health, Pilestredet Park 7, Oslo, Norway, 0176.

Background: The prevalence of overweight and obesity is increasing globally, an increase which has major implications for both population health and costs to health services. This is an update of a Cochrane Review.

Objectives: To assess the effects of strategies to change the behaviour of health professionals or the organisation of care compared to standard care, to promote weight reduction in children and adults with overweight or obesity.

Search Methods: We searched the following databases for primary studies up to September 2016: CENTRAL, MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL, DARE and PsycINFO. We searched the reference lists of included studies and two trial registries.

Selection Criteria: We considered randomised trials that compared routine provision of care with interventions aimed either at changing the behaviour of healthcare professionals or the organisation of care to promote weight reduction in children and adults with overweight or obesity.

Data Collection And Analysis: We used standard methodological procedures expected by Cochrane when conducting this review. We report the results for the professional interventions and the organisational interventions in seven 'Summary of findings' tables.

Main Results: We identified 12 studies for inclusion in this review, seven of which evaluated interventions targeting healthcare professional and five targeting the organisation of care. Eight studies recruited adults with overweight or obesity and four recruited children with obesity. Eight studies had an overall high risk of bias, and four had a low risk of bias. In total, 139 practices provided care to 89,754 people, with a median follow-up of 12 months. Professional interventions Educational interventions aimed at general practitioners (GPs), may slightly reduce the weight of participants (mean difference (MD) -1.24 kg, 95% confidence interval (CI) -2.84 to 0.37; 3 studies, N = 1017 adults; low-certainty evidence).Tailoring interventions to improve GPs' compliance with obesity guidelines probably leads to little or no difference in weight loss (MD 0.05 (kg), 95% CI -0.32 to 0.41; 1 study, N = 49,807 adults; moderate-certainty evidence).It is uncertain if providing doctors with reminders results in a greater weight reduction than standard care (men: MD -11.20 kg, 95% CI -20.66 kg to -1.74 kg, and women: MD -1.30 kg, 95% CI [-7.34, 4.74] kg; 1 study, N = 90 adults; very low-certainty evidence).Providing clinicians with a clinical decision support (CDS) tool to assist with obesity management at the point of care leads to little or no difference in the body mass index (BMI) z-score of children (MD -0.08, 95% CI -0.15 to -0.01 in 378 children; moderate-certainty evidence), CDS tools may lead to little or no difference in weight loss in adults: MD -0.095 kg (-0.21 lbs), P = 0.47; 1 study, N = 35,665; low-certainty evidence. Organisational interventions Adults with overweight or obesity may lose more weight if the care was provided by a dietitian (by -5.60 kg, 95% CI -4.83 kg to -6.37 kg) or by a doctor-dietitian team (by -6.70 kg, 95% CI -7.52 kg to -5.88 kg; 1 study, N = 270 adults; low-certainty evidence). Shared care leads to little or no difference in the BMI z-score of children with obesity (adjusted MD -0.05, 95% CI -0.14 to 0.03; 1 study, N = 105 children; low-certainty evidence).Organisational restructuring of the delivery of primary care (i.e. introducing the chronic care model) may result in a slightly lower increase in the BMI of children who received care at intervention clinics (BMI change: adjusted MD -0.21, 95% CI -0.50 to 0.07; 1 study, unadjusted MD -0.18, 95% CI -0.20 to -0.16; N=473 participants; moderate-certainty evidence).Mail and phone interventions probably lead to little or no difference in weight loss in adults (mean weight change (kg) using mail: -0.36, 95% CI -1.18 to 0.46; phone: -0.44, 95% CI -1.26 to 0.38; 1 study, N = 1801 adults; moderate-certainty evidence). Care delivered by a nurse at a primary care clinic may lead to little or no difference in the BMI z-score in children (MD -0.02, 95% CI -0.16 to 0.12; 1 study, N = 52 children; very low-certainty evidence).Two studies reported data on cost effectiveness: one study favoured mail and standard care over telephone consultations, and the other study achieved weight loss at a modest cost in both intervention groups (doctor and doctor-dietitian). One study of shared care reported similar adverse effects in both groups.

Authors' Conclusions: We found little convincing evidence for a clinically-important effect on participants' weight or BMI of any of the evaluated interventions. While pooled results from three studies indicate that educational interventions targeting healthcare professionals may lead to a slight weight reduction in adults, the certainty of these results is low. Two trials evaluating CDS tools (unpooled results) for improved weight management suggest little or no effect on weight or BMI change in adults or children with overweight or obesity. Evidence for all the other interventions evaluated came mostly from single studies. The certainty of the included evidence varied from moderate to very low for the main outcomes (weight and BMI). All of the evaluated interventions would need further investigation to ascertain their strengths and limitations as effective strategies to change the behaviour of healthcare professionals or the organisation of care. As only two studies reported on cost, we know little about cost effectiveness across the evaluated interventions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD000984.pub3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6486102PMC
November 2017

Early discharge hospital at home.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2017 06 26;6:CD000356. Epub 2017 Jun 26.

Nuffield Department of Population Health, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK.

Background: Early discharge hospital at home is a service that provides active treatment by healthcare professionals in the patient's home for a condition that otherwise would require acute hospital inpatient care. This is an update of a Cochrane review.

Objectives: To determine the effectiveness and cost of managing patients with early discharge hospital at home compared with inpatient hospital care.

Search Methods: We searched the following databases to 9 January 2017: the Cochrane Effective Practice and Organisation of Care Group (EPOC) register, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL), MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL, and EconLit. We searched clinical trials registries.

Selection Criteria: Randomised trials comparing early discharge hospital at home with acute hospital inpatient care for adults. We excluded obstetric, paediatric and mental health hospital at home schemes.   DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: We followed the standard methodological procedures expected by Cochrane and EPOC. We used the GRADE approach to assess the certainty of the body of evidence for the most important outcomes.

Main Results: We included 32 trials (N = 4746), six of them new for this update, mainly conducted in high-income countries. We judged most of the studies to have a low or unclear risk of bias. The intervention was delivered by hospital outreach services (17 trials), community-based services (11 trials), and was co-ordinated by a hospital-based stroke team or physician in conjunction with community-based services in four trials.Studies recruiting people recovering from strokeEarly discharge hospital at home probably makes little or no difference to mortality at three to six months (risk ratio (RR) 0.92, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.57 to 1.48, N = 1114, 11 trials, moderate-certainty evidence) and may make little or no difference to the risk of hospital readmission (RR 1.09, 95% CI 0.71 to 1.66, N = 345, 5 trials, low-certainty evidence). Hospital at home may lower the risk of living in institutional setting at six months (RR 0.63, 96% CI 0.40 to 0.98; N = 574, 4 trials, low-certainty evidence) and might slightly improve patient satisfaction (N = 795, low-certainty evidence). Hospital at home probably reduces hospital length of stay, as moderate-certainty evidence found that people assigned to hospital at home are discharged from the intervention about seven days earlier than people receiving inpatient care (95% CI 10.19 to 3.17 days earlier, N = 528, 4 trials). It is uncertain whether hospital at home has an effect on cost (very low-certainty evidence).Studies recruiting people with a mix of medical conditionsEarly discharge hospital at home probably makes little or no difference to mortality (RR 1.07, 95% CI 0.76 to 1.49; N = 1247, 8 trials, moderate-certainty evidence). In people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) there was insufficient information to determine the effect of these two approaches on mortality (RR 0.53, 95% CI 0.25 to 1.12, N = 496, 5 trials, low-certainty evidence). The intervention probably increases the risk of hospital readmission in a mix of medical conditions, although the results are also compatible with no difference and a relatively large increase in the risk of readmission (RR 1.25, 95% CI 0.98 to 1.58, N = 1276, 9 trials, moderate-certainty evidence). Early discharge hospital at home may decrease the risk of readmission for people with COPD (RR 0.86, 95% CI 0.66 to 1.13, N = 496, 5 trials low-certainty evidence). Hospital at home may lower the risk of living in an institutional setting (RR 0.69, 0.48 to 0.99; N = 484, 3 trials, low-certainty evidence). The intervention might slightly improve patient satisfaction (N = 900, low-certainty evidence). The effect of early discharge hospital at home on hospital length of stay for older patients with a mix of conditions ranged from a reduction of 20 days to a reduction of less than half a day (moderate-certainty evidence, N = 767). It is uncertain whether hospital at home has an effect on cost (very low-certainty evidence).Studies recruiting people undergoing elective surgeryThree studies did not report higher rates of mortality with hospital at home compared with inpatient care (data not pooled, N = 856, low-certainty evidence; mainly orthopaedic surgery). Hospital at home may lead to little or no difference in readmission to hospital for people who were mainly recovering from orthopaedic surgery (N = 1229, low-certainty evidence). We could not establish the effects of hospital at home on the risk of living in institutional care, due to a lack of data. The intervention might slightly improve patient satisfaction (N = 1229, low-certainty evidence). People recovering from orthopaedic surgery allocated to early discharge hospital at home were discharged from the intervention on average four days earlier than people allocated to usual inpatient care (4.44 days earlier, 95% CI 6.37 to 2.51 days earlier, , N = 411, 4 trials, moderate-certainty evidence). It is uncertain whether hospital at home has an effect on cost (very low-certainty evidence).

Authors' Conclusions: Despite increasing interest in the potential of early discharge hospital at home services as a less expensive alternative to inpatient care, this review provides insufficient evidence of economic benefit (through a reduction in hospital length of stay) or improved health outcomes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD000356.pub4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6481686PMC
June 2017

Home or foster home care versus institutional long-term care for functionally dependent older people.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2017 Apr 3;4:CD009844. Epub 2017 Apr 3.

Institute of Cardiovascular and Medical Sciences, University of Glasgow, New Lister Building, Glasgow Royal Infirmary, Glasgow, UK, G4 0SF.

Background: Changing population demographics have led to an increasing number of functionally dependent older people who require care and medical treatment. In many countries, government policy aims to shift resources into the community from institutional care settings with the expectation that this will reduce costs and improve the quality of care compared.

Objectives: To assess the effects of long-term home or foster home care versus institutional care for functionally dependent older people.

Search Methods: We searched the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL) via the Cochrane Library, MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL, and two trials registers to November 2015.

Selection Criteria: We included randomised and non-randomised trials, controlled before-after studies and interrupted time series studies complying with the EPOC study design criteria and comparing the effects of long-term home care versus institutional care for functionally dependent older people.

Data Collection And Analysis: Two reviewers independently extracted data and assessed the risk of bias of each included study. We reported the results narratively, as the substantial heterogeneity across studies meant that meta-analysis was not appropriate.

Main Results: We included 10 studies involving 16,377 participants, all of which were conducted in high income countries. Included studies compared community-based care with institutional care (care homes). The sample size ranged from 98 to 11,803 (median N = 204). There was substantial heterogeneity in the healthcare context, interventions studied, and outcomes assessed. One study was a randomised trial (N = 112); other included studies used designs that had potential for bias, particularly due lack of randomisation, baseline imbalances, and non-blinded outcome assessment. Most studies did not select (or exclude) participants for any specific disease state, with the exception of one study that only included patients if they had a stroke. All studies had methodological limitations, so readers should interpret results with caution.It is uncertain whether long-term home care compared to nursing home care decreases mortality risk (2 studies, N = 314, very-low certainty evidence). Estimates ranged from a nearly three-fold increased risk of mortality in the homecare group (risk ratio (RR) 2.89, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.57 to 5.32) to a 62% relative reduction (RR 0.38, 95% CI 0.17 to 0.61). We did not pool data due to the high degree of heterogeneity (I = 94%).It is uncertain whether the intervention has a beneficial effect on physical function, as the certainty of evidence is very low (5 studies, N = 1295). Two studies reported that participants who received long-term home care had improved activities of daily living compared to those in a nursing home, whereas a third study reported that all participants performed equally on physical function.It is uncertain whether long-term home care improves happiness compared to nursing home care (RR 1.97, 95% CI 1.27 to 3.04) or general satisfaction because the certainty of evidence was very low (2 studies, N = 114).The extent to which long-term home care was associated to more or fewer adverse health outcomes than nursing home care was not reported.It is uncertain whether long-term home care compared to nursing home care decreases the risk of hospital admission (very low-certainty evidence, N = 14,853). RR estimates ranged from 2.75 (95% CI 2.59 to 2.92), showing an increased risk for those receiving care at home, to 0.82 (95% CI 0.72 to 0.93), showing a slightly reduced risk for the same group. We did not pool data due to the high degree of heterogeneity (I = 99%).

Authors' Conclusions: There are insufficient high-quality published data to support any particular model of care for functionally dependent older people. Community-based care was not consistently beneficial across all the included studies; there were some data suggesting that community-based care may be associated with improved quality of life and physical function compared to institutional care. However, community alternatives to institutional care may be associated with increased risk of hospitalisation. Future studies should assess healthcare utilisation, perform economic analysis, and consider caregiver burden.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD009844.pub2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6478250PMC
April 2017

External inspection of compliance with standards for improved healthcare outcomes.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2016 12 2;12:CD008992. Epub 2016 Dec 2.

Department of Health Administration, IRSPUM, Faculty of Medicine, University of Montreal, 1420 Boulevard Mont-Royal, Montreal, QC, Canada, H2V 4P3.

Background: Inspection systems are used in healthcare to promote quality improvements (i.e. to achieve changes in organisational structures or processes, healthcare provider behaviour and patient outcomes). These systems are based on the assumption that externally promoted adherence to evidence-based standards (through inspection/assessment) will result in higher quality of healthcare. However, the benefits of external inspection in terms of organisational-, provider- and patient-level outcomes are not clear. This is the first update of the original Cochrane review, published in 2011.

Objectives: To evaluate the effectiveness of external inspection of compliance with standards in improving healthcare organisation behaviour, healthcare professional behaviour and patient outcomes.

Search Methods: We searched the following electronic databases for studies up to 1 June 2015: the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL), MEDLINE, Embase, Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effectiveness, HMIC, ClinicalTrials.gov and the World Health Organization International Clinical Trials Registry Platform. There was no language restriction and we included studies regardless of publication status. We also searched the reference lists of included studies and contacted authors of relevant papers, accreditation bodies and the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), regarding any further published or unpublished work. We also searched an online database of systematic reviews (PDQ-evidence.org).

Selection Criteria: We included randomised controlled trials (RCTs), non-randomised trials (NRCTs), interrupted time series (ITSs) and controlled before-after studies (CBAs) evaluating the effect of external inspection against external standards on healthcare organisation change, healthcare professional behaviour or patient outcomes in hospitals, primary healthcare organisations and other community-based healthcare organisations.

Data Collection And Analysis: Two review authors independently applied eligibility criteria, extracted data and assessed the risk of bias of each included study. Since meta-analysis was not possible, we produced a narrative results summary. We used the GRADE tool to assess the certainty of the evidence.

Main Results: We did not identify any new eligible studies in this update. One cluster RCT involving 20 South African public hospitals and one ITS involving all acute hospital trusts in England, met the inclusion criteria. A trust is a National Health Service hospital which has opted to withdraw from local authority control and be managed by a trust instead.The cluster RCT reported mixed effects of external inspection on compliance with COHSASA (Council for Health Services Accreditation for South Africa) accreditation standards and eight indicators of hospital quality. Improved total compliance score with COHSASA accreditation standards was reported for 21/28 service elements: mean intervention effect was 30% (95% confidence interval (CI) 23% to 37%) (P < 0.001). The score increased from 48% to 78% in intervention hospitals, while remaining the same in control hospitals (43%). The median intervention effect for the indicators of hospital quality of care was 2.4% (range -1.9% to +11.8%).The ITS study evaluated compliance with policies to address healthcare-acquired infections and reported a mean reduction in MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) infection rates of 100 cases per quarter (95% CI -221.0 to 21.5, P = 0.096) at three months' follow-up and an increase of 70 cases per quarter (95% CI -250.5 to 391.0; P = 0.632) at 24 months' follow-up. Regression analysis showed similar MRSA rates before and after the external inspection (difference in slope 24.27, 95% CI -10.4 to 58.9; P = 0.147).Neither included study reported data on unanticipated/adverse consequences or economic outcomes. The cluster RCT reported mainly outcomes related to healthcare organisation change, and no patient reported outcomes other than patient satisfaction.The certainty of the included evidence from both studies was very low. It is uncertain whether external inspection accreditation programmes lead to improved compliance with accreditation standards. It is also uncertain if external inspection infection programmes lead to improved compliance with standards, and if this in turn influences healthcare-acquired MRSA infection rates.

Authors' Conclusions: The review highlights the paucity of high-quality controlled evaluations of the effectiveness and the cost-effectiveness of external inspection systems. If policy makers wish to understand the effectiveness of this type of intervention better, there needs to be further studies across a range of settings and contexts and studies reporting outcomes important to patients.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6464009PMC
December 2016

Anxiety disorders and all-cause mortality: systematic review and meta-analysis.

Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol 2016 11 14;51(11):1467-1475. Epub 2016 Sep 14.

Nuffield Department of Population Health, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK.

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to perform a systematic review and meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies that examined the relationship between anxiety disorders, or clinically significant anxiety symptoms, at baseline and all-cause mortality at follow-up relative to control participants without clinically significant anxiety.

Methods: PubMed, EMBASE, PsycInfo, and CINAHL were searched through July 2015, along with manual searches of published reviews and forward and backward snowball searches of included studies. Studies were excluded if anxiety was not defined with a standardized instrument, or if participants were followed-up for 1 year or less. The initial search yielded 7901 articles after the removal of duplicates, of which 328 underwent full-text screening.

Results: Forty-two estimates from 36 articles were included in the meta-analysis with a total sample of 127,552 participants and over 11,573 deaths. The overall hazard ratio (HR) estimate of mortality in clinically anxious participants relative to controls was 1.09 (95 % CI 1.01-1.16); however, this was reduced after adjusting for publication bias (1.03; 95 % CI 0.95-1.13). There was no evidence of increased mortality risk among anxious participants derived from community samples (0.99; 95 % CI 0.96-1.02) and in studies that adjusted for a diagnosis of depression (1.01; 95 % CI 0.96-1.06).

Conclusions: These findings suggest that positive associations in the literature are attributable to studies in smaller samples, comorbid depression (or other psychiatric conditions) among participants, and possible confounding in medical patient samples followed-up for short durations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00127-016-1284-6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5102798PMC
November 2016

Admission avoidance hospital at home.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2016 Sep 1;9:CD007491. Epub 2016 Sep 1.

Nuffield Department of Population Health, University of Oxford, Rosemary Rue Building, Old Road Campus, Headington, Oxford, Oxfordshire, UK, OX3 7LF.

Background: Admission avoidance hospital at home provides active treatment by healthcare professionals in the patient's home for a condition that otherwise would require acute hospital inpatient care, and always for a limited time period. This is the third update of the original review.

Objectives: To determine the effectiveness and cost of managing patients with admission avoidance hospital at home compared with inpatient hospital care.

Search Methods: We searched the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL), MEDLINE, EMBASE, two other databases, and two trials registers on 2 March 2016. We checked the reference lists of eligible articles. We sought unpublished studies by contacting providers and researchers who were known to be involved in the field.

Selection Criteria: Randomised controlled trials recruiting participants aged 18 years and over. Studies comparing admission avoidance hospital at home with acute hospital inpatient care.

Data Collection And Analysis: We followed the standard methodological procedures expected by Cochrane and the Effective Practice and Organisation of Care (EPOC) Group. We performed meta-analysis for trials that compared similar interventions and reported comparable outcomes with sufficient data, requested individual patient data from trialists, and relied on published data when this was not available. We used the GRADE approach to assess the certainty of the body of evidence for the most important outcomes.

Main Results: We included 16 randomised controlled trials with a total of 1814 participants; three trials recruited participants with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, two trials recruited participants recovering from a stroke, six trials recruited participants with an acute medical condition who were mainly elderly, and the remaining trials recruited participants with a mix of conditions. We assessed the majority of the included studies as at low risk of selection, detection, and attrition bias, and unclear for selective reporting and performance bias. Admission avoidance hospital at home probably makes little or no difference on mortality at six months' follow-up (risk ratio (RR) 0.77, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.60 to 0.99; P = 0.04; I = 0%; 912 participants; moderate-certainty evidence), little or no difference on the likelihood of being transferred (or readmitted) to hospital (RR 0.98, 95% CI 0.77 to 1.23; P = 0.84; I = 28%; 834 participants; moderate-certainty evidence), and may reduce the likelihood of living in residential care at six months' follow-up (RR 0.35, 95% CI 0.22 to 0.57; P < 0.0001; I = 78%; 727 participants; low-certainty evidence). Satisfaction with healthcare received may be improved with admission avoidance hospital at home (646 participants, low-certainty evidence); few studies reported the effect on caregivers. When the costs of informal care were excluded, admission avoidance hospital at home may be less expensive than admission to an acute hospital ward (287 participants, low-certainty evidence); there was variation in the reduction of hospital length of stay, estimates ranged from a mean difference of -8.09 days (95% CI -14.34 to -1.85) in a trial recruiting older people with varied health problems, to a mean increase of 15.90 days (95% CI 8.10 to 23.70) in a study that recruited patients recovering from a stroke.

Authors' Conclusions: Admission avoidance hospital at home, with the option of transfer to hospital, may provide an effective alternative to inpatient care for a select group of elderly patients requiring hospital admission. However, the evidence is limited by the small randomised controlled trials included in the review, which adds a degree of imprecision to the results for the main outcomes.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6457791PMC
September 2016

Interventions to increase or decrease the length of primary care physicians' consultation.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2016 Aug 25(8):CD003540. Epub 2016 Aug 25.

Department of Health Sciences, University of Leicester, Leicester, Leicestershire, UK, LE1 7RH.

Background: Observational studies have shown differences in process and outcome between the consultations of primary care physicians whose average consultation lengths differ. These differences may be due to self selection. This is the first update of the original review.

Objectives: To assess the effects of interventions to alter the length of primary care physicians' consultations.

Search Methods: We searched the following electronic databases until 4 January 2016: the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL), MEDLINE, EMBASE, ClinicalTrials.gov, and World Health Organization International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (WHO ICTRP).

Selection Criteria: Randomised controlled trials and non-randomised controlled trials of interventions to alter the length of primary care physicians' consultations.

Data Collection And Analysis: Two review authors independently extracted data and assessed the risk of bias of included studies using agreed criteria and resolved disagreements by discussion. We attempted to contact authors of primary studies with missing data. Given the heterogeneity of studies, we did not conduct a meta-analysis. We assessed the certainty of the evidence for the most important outcomes using the GRADE approach and have presented the results in a narrative summary.

Main Results: Five studies met the inclusion criteria. All were conducted in the UK, and tested short-term changes in the consultation time allocated to each patient. Overall, our confidence in the results was very low; most studies had a high risk of bias, particularly due to non-random allocation of participants and the absence of data on participants' characteristics and small sample sizes. We are uncertain whether altering appointment length increases primary care consultation length, number of referrals and investigations, prescriptions, or patient satisfaction based on very low-certainty evidence. None of the studies reported on the effects of altering the length of consultation on resources used.

Authors' Conclusions: We did not find sufficient evidence to support or refute a policy of altering the lengths of primary care physicians' consultations. It is possible that these findings may change if high-quality trials are reported in the future. Further trials are needed that focus on health outcomes and cost-effectiveness.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD003540.pub3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7154578PMC
August 2016

Organising healthcare services for persons with an intellectual disability.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2016 Apr 11;4:CD007492. Epub 2016 Apr 11.

Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Ontario Institute of Technology, 2000 Simcoe Street North, Oshawa, ON, Canada, L1H 7K4.

Background: When compared to the general population, persons with an intellectual disability have lower life expectancy, higher morbidity, and more difficulty finding and obtaining healthcare. Organisational interventions are used to reconfigure the structure or delivery of healthcare services. This is the first update of the original review.

Objectives: To assess the effects of organisational interventions of healthcare services for the mental and physical health problems of persons with an intellectual disability.

Search Methods: For this update we searched CENTRAL, MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL and other databases, from April 2006 to 4 September 2015. We checked reference lists of included studies and consulted experts in the field.

Selection Criteria: Randomised controlled trials of organisational interventions of healthcare services aimed at improving care of mental and physical health problems of adult persons with an intellectual disability.

Data Collection And Analysis: We employed standard methodological procedures as outlined in the Cochrane Handbook of Systematic Reviews of Interventions, in addition to specific guidance from the Cochrane Effective Practice and Organisation of Care (EPOC) Group.

Main Results: We identified one new trial from the updated searches.Seven trials (347 participants) met the selection criteria. The interventions varied but had common components: interventions that increased the intensity and frequency of service delivery (4 trials, 200 participants), community-based specialist behaviour therapy (1 trial, 63 participants), and outreach treatment (1 trial, 50 participants). Another trial compared two active arms (traditional counselling and integrated intervention for bereavement, 34 participants).The included studies investigated interventions dealing with the mental health problems of persons with an intellectual disability; none focused on physical health problems. Four studies assessed the effect of organisational interventions on behavioural problems for persons with an intellectual disability, three assessed care giver burden, and three assessed the costs associated with the interventions. None of the included studies reported data on the effect of organisational interventions on adverse events. Most studies were assessed as having low risk of bias.It is uncertain whether interventions that increase the frequency and intensity of delivery or outreach treatment decrease behavioural problems for persons with an intellectual disability (two and one trials respectively, very low certainty evidence). Behavioural problems were slightly decreased by community-based specialist behavioural therapy (one trial, low certainty evidence). Increasing the frequency and intensity of service delivery probably makes little or no difference to care giver burden (MD 0.03, 95% CI -3.48 to 3.54, two trials, moderate certainty evidence). It is uncertain whether outreach treatment makes any difference for care giver burden (one trial, very low certainty evidence). There was very limited evidence regarding costs, with low to very low certainty evidence for the different interventions.

Authors' Conclusions: There is very limited evidence on the organisation of healthcare services for persons with an intellectual disability. There are currently no well-designed studies focusing on organising the health services of persons with an intellectual disability and concurrent physical problems. There are very few studies of organisational interventions targeting mental health needs and the results of those that were found need corroboration. There is an urgent need for high-quality health services research to identify optimal health services for persons with an intellectual disability and concurrent physical problem.
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April 2016

Hospital at home: home-based end-of-life care.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2016 Feb 18;2:CD009231. Epub 2016 Feb 18.

Nuffield Department of Population Health, University of Oxford, Rosemary Rue Building, Old Road Campus, Headington, Oxford, Oxfordshire, UK, OX3 7LF.

Background: The policy in a number of countries is to provide people with a terminal illness the choice of dying at home. This policy is supported by surveys indicating that the general public and people with a terminal illness would prefer to receive end-of-life care at home. This is the fourth update of the original review.

Objectives: To determine if providing home-based end-of-life care reduces the likelihood of dying in hospital and what effect this has on patients' symptoms, quality of life, health service costs, and caregivers, compared with inpatient hospital or hospice care.

Search Methods: We searched the following databases until April 2015: Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL) (the Cochrane Library), Ovid MEDLINE(R) (from 1950), EMBASE (from 1980), CINAHL (from 1982), and EconLit (from 1969). We checked the reference lists of potentially relevant articles identified and handsearched palliative care publications, clinical trials registries, and a database of systematic reviews for related trials (PDQ-Evidence 2015).

Selection Criteria: Randomised controlled trials, interrupted time series, or controlled before and after studies evaluating the effectiveness of home-based end-of-life care with inpatient hospital or hospice care for people aged 18 years and older.

Data Collection And Analysis: Two review authors independently extracted data and assessed study quality. We combined the published data for dichotomous outcomes using fixed-effect Mantel-Haenszel meta-analysis. When combining outcome data was not possible, we reported the results from individual studies.

Main Results: We included four trials in this review and did not identify new studies from the search in April 2015. Home-based end-of-life care increased the likelihood of dying at home compared with usual care (risk ratio (RR) 1.33, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.14 to 1.55, P = 0.0002; Chi(2) = 1.72, df = 2, P = 0.42, I(2) = 0%; 3 trials; N = 652; high quality evidence). Admission to hospital while receiving home-based end-of-life care varied between trials, and this was reflected by a high level of statistical heterogeneity in this analysis (range RR 0.62 to RR 2.61; 4 trials; N = 823; moderate quality evidence). Home-based end-of-life care may slightly improve patient satisfaction at one-month follow-up and reduce it at six-month follow-up (2 trials; low quality evidence). The effect on caregivers is uncertain (2 trials; low quality evidence). The intervention may slightly reduce healthcare costs (2 trials, low quality evidence). No trial reported costs to patients and caregivers.

Authors' Conclusions: The evidence included in this review supports the use of home-based end-of-life care programmes for increasing the number of people who will die at home, although the numbers of people admitted to hospital while receiving end-of-life care should be monitored. Future research should systematically assess the impact of home-based end-of-life care on caregivers.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7111432PMC
February 2016

Discharge planning from hospital.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2016 Jan 27(1):CD000313. Epub 2016 Jan 27.

Nuffield Department of Population Health, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK.

Background: Discharge planning is a routine feature of health systems in many countries. The aim of discharge planning is to reduce hospital length of stay and unplanned readmission to hospital, and to improve the co-ordination of services following discharge from hospital.This is the third update of the original review.

Objectives: To assess the effectiveness of planning the discharge of individual patients moving from hospital.

Search Methods: We updated the review using the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL) (2015, Issue 9), MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, the Social Science Citation Index (last searched in October 2015), and the US National Institutes of Health trial register (ClinicalTrials.gov).

Selection Criteria: Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) that compared an individualised discharge plan with routine discharge care that was not tailored to individual participants. Participants were hospital inpatients.

Data Collection And Analysis: Two authors independently undertook data analysis and quality assessment using a pre-designed data extraction sheet. We grouped studies according to patient groups (elderly medical patients, patients recovering from surgery, and those with a mix of conditions) and by outcome. We performed our statistical analysis according to the intention-to-treat principle, calculating risk ratios (RRs) for dichotomous outcomes and mean differences (MDs) for continuous data using fixed-effect meta-analysis. When combining outcome data was not possible because of differences in the reporting of outcomes, we summarised the reported data in the text.

Main Results: We included 30 trials (11,964 participants), including six identified in this update. Twenty-one trials recruited older participants with a medical condition, five recruited participants with a mix of medical and surgical conditions, one recruited participants from a psychiatric hospital, one from both a psychiatric hospital and from a general hospital, and two trials recruited participants admitted to hospital following a fall. Hospital length of stay and readmissions to hospital were reduced for participants admitted to hospital with a medical diagnosis and who were allocated to discharge planning (length of stay MD - 0.73, 95% CI - 1.33 to - 0.12, 12 trials, moderate certainty evidence; readmission rates RR 0.87, 95% CI 0.79 to 0.97, 15 trials, moderate certainty evidence). It is uncertain whether discharge planning reduces readmission rates for patients admitted to hospital following a fall (RR 1.36, 95% CI 0.46 to 4.01, 2 trials, very low certainty evidence). For elderly patients with a medical condition, there was little or no difference between groups for mortality (RR 0.99, 95% CI 0.79 to 1.24, moderate certainty). There was also little evidence regarding mortality for participants recovering from surgery or who had a mix of medical and surgical conditions. Discharge planning may lead to increased satisfaction for patients and healthcare professionals (low certainty evidence, six trials). It is uncertain whether there is any difference in the cost of care when discharge planning is implemented with patients who have a medical condition (very low certainty evidence, five trials).

Authors' Conclusions: A discharge plan tailored to the individual patient probably brings about a small reduction in hospital length of stay and reduces the risk of readmission to hospital at three months follow-up for older people with a medical condition. Discharge planning may lead to increased satisfaction with healthcare for patients and professionals. There is little evidence that discharge planning reduces costs to the health service.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7073416PMC
January 2016

Impact of Contextual Factors on the Effect of Interventions to Improve Health Worker Performance in Sub-Saharan Africa: Review of Randomised Clinical Trials.

PLoS One 2016 5;11(1):e0145206. Epub 2016 Jan 5.

Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom.

Background: Africa bears 24% of the global burden of disease but has only 3% of the world's health workers. Substantial variation in health worker performance adds to the negative impact of this significant shortfall. We therefore sought to identify interventions implemented in sub-Saharan African aiming to improve health worker performance and the contextual factors likely to influence local effectiveness.

Methods And Findings: A systematic search for randomised controlled trials of interventions to improve health worker performance undertaken in sub-Saharan Africa identified 41 eligible trials. Data were extracted to define the interventions' components, calculate the absolute improvement in performance achieved, and document the likelihood of bias. Within-study variability in effect was extracted where reported. Statements about contextual factors likely to have modified effect were subjected to thematic analysis. Interventions to improve health worker performance can be very effective. Two of the three trials assessing mortality impact showed significant reductions in death rates (age<5 case fatality 5% versus 10%, p<0.01; maternal in-hospital mortality 6.8/1000 versus 10.3/1000; p<0.05). Eight of twelve trials focusing on prescribing had a statistically significant positive effect, achieving an absolute improvement varying from 9% to 48%. However, reported range of improvement between centres within trials varied substantially, in many cases exceeding the mean effect. Nine contextual themes were identified as modifiers of intervention effect across studies; most frequently cited were supply-line failures, inadequate supervision or management, and failure to follow-up training interventions with ongoing support, in addition to staff turnover.

Conclusions: Interventions to improve performance of existing staff and service quality have the potential to improve patient care in underserved settings. But in order to implement interventions effectively, policy makers need to understand and address the contextual factors which can contribute to differences in local effect. Researchers therefore must recognise the importance of reporting how context may modify effect size.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4701409PMC
July 2016

GPs' adherence to guidelines for structured assessments of stroke survivors in the community and care homes.

Fam Pract 2015 Dec 30;32(6):659-63. Epub 2015 Sep 30.

Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford, New Radcliffe House, Walton Street, Oxford OX2 6GG, Medical Sciences Division, University of Oxford, Level 3, John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford OX3 9DU and NIHR Oxford Biomedical Research Centre, The Joint Research Office, Block 60, The Churchill Hospital, Old Road, Headington OX3 7LE, UK.

Background: Clinical practice guidelines recommend that stroke survivors' needs be assessed at regular intervals after stroke. The extent to which GPs comply with national guidance particularly for patients in care homes who have greatest clinical complexity is unknown.

Objectives: This study aimed to establish the current clinical practice in the UK of needs assessment by GPs for stroke survivors after hospital discharge for acute stroke.

Methods: Cross-sectional online survey of current practice of GPs, using the national doctors.net network.

Results: The survey was completed by 300 GPs who had on average been working for 14 years. The structured assessment of stroke survivors' needs was not offered by 31% of GPs, with no significant difference for level of provision in community or care home settings. The outputs of reviews were added to patients' notes by 89% of GPs and used to change management by 57%. Only half the GPs reported integrating the information obtained into care plans and only a quarter of GPs had a protocol for follow-up of identified needs. Analysis of free-text comments indicated that patients in some care homes may receive more regular and structured reviews.

Conclusions: This survey suggests that at least one-third of GPs provide no formal review of the needs of stroke patients and that in only a minority are identified needs addressed in a structured way. Standardization is required for what is included in reviews and how needs are being identified and met.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/fampra/cmv074DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5926456PMC
December 2015

Healthcare interventions for depression in low socioeconomic status populations: A systematic review and meta-analysis.

Clin Psychol Rev 2015 Jun 10;38:65-78. Epub 2015 Mar 10.

Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford, UK.

The prevalence and impact of depressive disorders in developed countries are associated with certain population characteristics, including socioeconomic status. The aim of this systematic review and meta-analysis was to identify, characterize and analyze the short- and long-term effectiveness of healthcare interventions for depressive disorders in low socioeconomic status populations. The main biomedical databases were searched and fifteen articles assessing seventeen interventions were included in the review. Most interventions were implemented in the US (n=11) and culturally adapted (n=11). We conducted two meta-analyses for assessing both the short- (n=11) and long-term effectiveness (n=12) of interventions. There was a statistically significant reduction in overall depressive symptoms (-0.58, 95% CI [-0.74, -0.41]) at short-term (up to three months after the intervention), especially for combined and psychotherapeutic interventions. The overall effect slightly decreased at long-term (-0.42, 95% CI [-0.63, -0.21]). Those interventions including culturally specific training for providers and booster sessions seemed to be more effective in reducing depressive disorders at short and long term, respectively. In conclusion, healthcare interventions are effective in decreasing clinically significant depressive disorders in low socioeconomic status populations. Future interventions should take into account the key characteristics identified in this review.
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June 2015
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