Background: Management of chronic diseases such as movement disorders can be challenging. Nurse-administered telephone follow-up programs have demonstrated clinical and cost efficacy in a variety of health care models. However, their efficacy in movement disorders has not been sufficiently addressed. This observational study fills a knowledge gap by reporting the nature of individuals utilizing a nurse-administered telephone service and the reasons for and the outcomes of calls. Method: Consecutive calls received by the clinic for a 12-month duration were recorded. A sample of 312 calls from 132 patient charts was analyzed. Variables for analysis and coding schema were determined a-priori and included demographic information as well as information around the reasons for and outcomes of calls. The narratives of documented calls were reviewed retrospectively and responses coded for analysis by a separate researcher. Data was analyzed using descriptive statistical methods. Result: Patients made the majority of calls (49%). 27% of calls related to worsening symptoms and another 35% of calls related to medication issues or renewals. The mean call duration was 15.93 minutes. The majority of calls were received mid-way between clinic visits (M = 89.24 days). The nurse resolved 84% of calls independently. The mean number of calls per patient was 2.93. Issues reported by patients were resolved (approximately 90%) without need for follow-up emergency, family, or subspecialty clinic visits. Conclusion: The results underscore the complexity of medical issues in a movement disorders population. The current study provides support for a nurse-administered telephone follow-up program in movement disorders.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology