Video clinics versus standard face-to-face appointments for liver transplant patients in routine hospital outpatient care: study protocol for a pragmatic randomised evaluation of myVideoClinic.

O'Connell Francischetto, Elaine and Damery, Sarah and Ferguson, James and Combes, Gill (2018) Video clinics versus standard face-to-face appointments for liver transplant patients in routine hospital outpatient care: study protocol for a pragmatic randomised evaluation of myVideoClinic. Trials, 19 (1). p. 574. ISSN 1745-6215.

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Abstract

BACKGROUND

Video clinics, where patients can have a hospital appointment with their clinician from home, are emerging in practice, but their effectiveness is unclear. This study will evaluate whether a video clinic implemented at the University Hospitals Birmingham (UHB) NHS Foundation Trust improves patient satisfaction compared to standard face-to-face appointments for liver transplant patients.

METHODS

This will be a parallel, two-arm, statistician-blinded, randomised evaluation. Clinically stable liver patients at 1 to 5 years post-transplant (n = 180) will be randomised in equal numbers to video clinic appointments (intervention) or standard face-to-face appointments (control). The intervention group will have outpatient appointments from home via a secure video link accessed through the UHB patient portal. All patients will complete baseline questionnaires before randomisation and electronic follow-up questionnaires after each follow-up appointment during the subsequent 12 months. The primary outcome is the difference in scores between groups for three domains of patient satisfaction, namely 'convenience of location', 'getting through to the office by phone' and 'length of time waiting' (modified Visit-Specific Satisfaction Instrument). Secondary outcomes include quality of life (EQ-5D-5 L), costs, clinical contacts and user experience. Statistical analysis will be descriptive and performed on an intention-to-treat basis. The primary outcome will be analysed using baseline and 3-, 6-, 9- and 12-month questionnaires (according to patient follow-up appointment frequency) and comparisons made between study arms. A within-trial cost consequences analysis will be undertaken on the economic data. Patients (n = 8), carers/family members (n = 6) and health professionals (n = 14) will be interviewed about the experience of video clinics and the interviews will be analysed using thematic analysis.

DISCUSSION

This study will allow an in depth understanding of whether video clinics can improve patient satisfaction with their care. In addition, the intervention could save patients time and costs, removing the need to travel long distances for outpatient appointments. Video clinics may be applicable to a wide range of other clinical settings and health conditions. The study has been approved by the NHS Health Research Authority and a National Research Ethics Committee (Ref: 17/WM/0338) and research governance approval has been obtained from UHB (Ref: RRK6080).

TRIAL REGISTRATION

ISRCTN: 14093266 (25/03/2018; retrospectively registered).

Item Type: Article
Subjects: WJ Urogenital system. Urology
Divisions: Emergency Services > Renal
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Mr Philip O'Reilly
Date Deposited: 19 Mar 2019 14:22
Last Modified: 19 Mar 2019 14:22
URI: http://www.repository.heartofengland.nhs.uk/id/eprint/1943

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