OBJECTIVE: To evaluate a new program, Integrating Physician Services in the Home (IPSITH), to integrate family practice and home care for acutely ill patients. DESIGN: Causal model, mixed-method, multi-measures design including comparison of IPSITH and non-IPSITH patients. Data were collected through chart reviews and through surveys of IPSITH and non-IPSITH patients, caregivers, family physicians, and community nurses. SETTING: London, Ont, and surrounding communities, where home care is coordinated through the Community Care Access Centre. PARTICIPANTS: A total of 82 patients receiving the new IPSITH program of care (including 29 family physicians and 1 nurse practitioner), 82 non-randomized matched patients receiving usual care (and their physicians), community nurses, and caregivers. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Emergency department (ED) visits and satisfaction with care. Analysis included a process evaluation of the IPSITH program and an outcomes evaluation comparing IPSITH and non-IPSITH patients. RESULTS: Patients and family physicians were very satisfied with the addition of a nurse practitioner to the IPSITH team. Controlling for symptom severity, a significantly smaller proportion of IPSITH patients had ED visits (3.7% versus 20.7%; P = .002), and IPSITH patients and their caregivers, family physicians, and community nurses had significantly higher levels of satisfaction (P < .05). There was no difference in caregiver burden between groups. CONCLUSION: Family physicians can be integrated into acute home care when appropriately supported by a team including a nurse practitioner. This integrated team was associated with better patient and system outcomes. The gains for the health system are reduced strain on hospital EDs and more satisfied patients.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Canadian Family Physician|
|State||Published - Nov 2010|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Family Practice