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scientific articles

Lessons Learned From Building a Pediatric-to-Adult Sickle Cell Transition Program

key information

source: Southern Medical Journal

year: 2019

authors: Smith WR, Sisler IY, Johnson S, Lipato TJ, Newlin JS, Owens ZS, Morgan AM, Treadwell MJ, Polak K

summary/abstract:

Objective:
More effective transitions and transfers of young people with sickle cell disease (SCD) into the adult healthcare setting is a focus of both primary care and specialty care medical organizations. Effective transition and transfer requires six core elements: establishing a policy, tracking progress, administering transition readiness assessments, planning for adult care, transferring to adult care, and integrating into an adult practice. We developed a program using these six core elements. The objective of our report was to assess the development and implementation of this program.

Methods:
We used the six core elements to develop and implement a program at Virginia Commonwealth University for children and adolescents with SCD to transition to adult health care.

Results:
We assessed individuals’ differences by age and grade, their independent living skills, their feelings about moving to adult care; tallied and analyzed several assessment scales; and assessed transfer success and patient retention.

Conclusions:
The principles and lessons we learned in developing and implementing this program over 5 years, accompanied by caring, flexible, and dedicated care team members, often can overcome even severe barriers to care transitions.

organization: Virginia Commonwealth University, USA; San Francisco Benioff Children's Hospital, USA

DOI: 10.14423/SMJ.0000000000000950

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