Establishing a Telephone Review Clinic for Patients with Inflammatory Bowel Disease

  • Leader(s)
  • Location
  • Duration
  • Received for Publication
  • Mary Kane – Inflammatory Bowel Disease Nurse Specialist
  • Causeway Hospital, Northern Health and Social Care Trust, Northern Ireland
  • December 2010 - January 2012
  • March 2012
  • Summary of Initiative
  • Patients with inflammatory bowel disease require long term follow up to assess disease activity, monitor medication compliance, detect side effects of treatments and provide psychological support. Traditionally this follow up has been in the Outpatients Department. However lengthy travel journeys for patients and unacceptable waiting times in overbooked clinics have contributed to high non-attendance rates in these clinics. This project examined the suitability of a telephone review clinic for a group of patients with stable symptoms. The project lead undertook a literature review, a review of non-attendance rates at the clinics and asked patients about providing an alternative to clinic attendance. Then in conjunction with the rest of the clinical team, the project lead developed referral criteria and initiated a telephone review pilot. To date, forty-two patients have been reviewed by the telephone review clinic with 90% reporting being satisfied or very satisfied with the service. Also anecdotally, the project lead has observed that non-attendance rates at outpatient clinics appear to be lower and there is now the opportunity to hold one or two outpatient slots for emergency review of sick patients, instead of adding their names to an already full or overbooked clinic. 


    This project was supported by the Foundation of Nursing Studies Patients First Programme in partnership with the Burdett Trust for Nursing.