Quale C, Olsen D, Klumph M, Kram JJF, Pankowski K, Kotovicz F. Group visits in chronic disease management. Poster presented at: Aurora Scientific Day; May 20, 2020; virtual webinar hosted in Milwaukee, WI.
Poster presented at: Aurora Scientific Day; May 20, 2020; virtual webinar hosted in Milwaukee, WI.
Background: Chronic disease management encompasses most of a primary care provider’s practice. However, brief office visits often pose a challenge to provide comprehensive patient education for their chronic conditions. One modality thought to improve management of chronic diseases is the group medical visit model. Even so, despite proven benefits for patients and medical providers, creating a sustainable chronic disease group is challenging.
Purpose: To identify the benefits and challenges of developing and maintaining a group visit model at academic primary care clinics in urban underserved settings.
Methods: Semi-structured interviews (N=9) with team members who had previously led or participated in group sessions for chronic disease management at 2 academic primary care clinics in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, were performed and recorded from October 2018 through March 2019. Interviews were reviewed by 2 different investigators who independently coded transcriptions using inductive methods using qualitative software (Dedoose v.8.3.17). Codes generated independently were then integrated into a single codebook by a third investigator.
Results: Three major themes were identified from the interviews: 1) Expected and actual benefits (eg, overall patient and provider satisfaction [56% of interviewees identified], patient empowerment [67%], more time with patients [34%]); 2) Expected and actual challenges (eg, recruitment [78%], retention [100%], scheduling of providers [45%], language barriers [23%], poor health literacy [34%]); and 3) Advice for providers conducting future group visits (eg, establishing a consistent leader to champion the group visit [23%], develop a well-organized curriculum [56%], understand reimbursement [23%]).
Conclusion: Group medical visits have several inherent barriers, especially around recruitment and retention. Even so, interviewees identified that group medical visits are beneficial to both patients and providers. Given the identified potential patient benefits, such as patient empowerment and improved health literacy, findings from our qualitative study will be used to identify resources to promote group visit success.