Have comorbidities, quality of life and the needs of patients with chronic skin diseases been met
Aldeen T H, Taylor C T and Bates E A
Queen’s Hospital, UK
: J Clin Exp Dermatol Res
Background: Common chronic skin diseases are usually associated with metabolic and psychological comorbidities. Living with the psychological symptoms means living with an “invisible disability”. Assessing the impact of disease severity on Quality of Life (QoL) and patient feedback is a critical step in the development of decision-analytic models. However, the limitation of the consultation can disable such patients to be actively involved in the decision making and management of their morbidity and comorbidities.
Objective: We propose using an online portal assessment system to enable patients to address their needs, views on the treatment and the service they receive and any new comorbidity that arises while waiting for a 3-6 month follow-up appointment.
Method: After conducting a pilot study on 23 patients with chronic skin diseases visiting the dermatology department, a cross-sectional study was conducted on 482 eligible male and female participants to assess their views, needs, coping mechanisms, and comorbidities. The survey was followed by interviewing 20 participants to capture their feedback on using the study tool on regular basis. Results: The majority (95%) of the participants reported physical, metabolic and psychological comorbidities. They experienced heterogeneous views, and needs that have not been assessed or met effectively. All the interviewed participants agreed with using the study tool on regular basis.
Conclusion: Using a portal system can provide unobservable clinical data on patients’ comorbidities, challenges, needs and treatment preference that may influence their management outcome. Equality, the system can provide longitudinal data/coding system that can improve the quality of the service.
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