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Improving Clinical Remission Rates in Pediatric Inflammatory Bowel Disease with Previsit Planning
  1. Jeffrey R. Savarino,
  2. Jess L. Kaplan,
  3. Harland S. Winter,
  4. Christopher J. Moran,
  5. Esther J. Israel
  1. MassGeneral Hospital for Children, United States of America
  1. Correspondence to Jeffrey R. Savarino jsavarino{at}


Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is a chronic autoimmune inflammatory disease of the intestine which can lead to malnutrition, poor quality of life, and colon cancer.1–4 Although there is no cure for the disease, clinical remission is the primary goal.5 The Center for Inflammatory Bowel Disease at MassGeneral Hospital for Children (MGHfC) adopted a Previsit Planning (PVP) model to identify and discuss symptomatic patients prior to their appointments to identify specific issues that impact disease management.6–8 The Registry from ImproveCareNow (ICN), the international Quality Improvement Collaborative for the management of Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis in pediatric and adolescent patients, was used to capture information from each ambulatory visit and hospitalization. Using the Model for Improvement framework, the team began a weekly review and made care recommendations of patients with active disease who were cared for by one physician. Interventions were modified over multiple Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) improvement cycles to increase the number of providers and to include patients with mild or moderate disease activity.9 Feedback from the providers regarding this process was elicited via a REDCap survey and the clinical remission rate was tracked using the ICN Registry. The clinical remission rate for the Center's patients increased from 77% (n=597) in September 2014 to 83% (n=585) in August 2015 and has been maintained. 78% of responding providers indicated that they found the PVP recommendations helpful “all of the time”. One hundred percent who responded to the survey said that they have used at least one recommendation provided to them. PVP for management of a chronic disease in pediatrics is feasible, even in a high volume practice. This process at MGHfC has resulted in the improvement of clinical remission rate. PDSA cycles were used to document successes and failures to help guide the work. Ongoing expansion of this PVP practice to all providers continues with the anticipation of including input from patients and their families, as well.

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