Can shared medical appointments improve the lives of people with COPD?
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is a lung condition that affects over 3 million people in England. Healthcare professionals support patients in managing their condition themselves during annual check-ups, but patients report insufficient time for discussion. Some practices are trying shared medical appointments (SMAs) involving groups of 6-8 patients with the same condition who share a longer appointment. Patients can ask staff questions and share their experiences with the group. It is unknown how well SMAs work for patients with COPD or whether it is more costly than usual care. Recently, more care has been delivered by video-link, but it’s uncertain if this is possible in groups of patients. These ideas will be tested in a small study to help decide if a larger, more expensive trial is possible in the future.
We’re a team of researchers, doctors, respiratory specialist nurses, pharmacists working in the North East and North Cumbrian region of England