The Developing Evidence Base

Since my last post on this subject (click here), there have been some developments in the ongoing effort to show the benefits of multidisciplinary primary care of frailty at home.

First, our friend and colleague Dr. Ted Rosenberg in Victoria has completed a very well-designed observational study of his excellent home-care practice in that city. Bottom line: better and cheaper care. I will provide reference to the details of his study as they become available shortly.

I’m also fortunate to be part of a small group of physicians pursuing funding for another study of our  HomeVIVE program in Vancouver which we believe will support the idea that we both better serve our patients, and save money, when we gather experienced motivated professionals together and provide comprehensive primary care at home.

Finally, we in BC have had conversations with colleagues in Toronto, and we are hoping to launch a bigger multi-center study that will examine the same outcomes (quality of care and cost) in various places across Canada.

All of us doing this work find that our practice experience, and both clinical and financial common sense, convince us of the value of the care model we practice.  But research of the type I’m talking about here will go a long way toward winning the battle to divert public funding from hospitals, nursing homes, and preventive drugs to sensible humane hands-on primary care.

About John Sloan

John Sloan is a senior academic physician in the Department of Family Practice at the University of British Columbia, and has spent most of his 30 years' practice caring for the frail elderly in Vancouver. He is the author of "A Bitter Pill: How the Medical System is Failing the Elderly", published in 2009 by Greystone Books. His innovative primary care practice for the frail elderly has been adopted by Vancouver Coastal Health and is expanding. Dr. Sloan lectures throughout North America on care of the elderly.
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2 Responses to The Developing Evidence Base

  1. Thanks for this callout to researchers. The evidence is well known and understood by the observant; but we do need the clinical research studies that can affirm this and turn the tide of funding. [Perhaps you can find a way to leverage this: I’m discovering that some modern young research students are appearing who not only love research & can do it well, but are truly motivated by the idea of contributing to compassionate change. They have huge energy to devote to such work.]

  2. Mary Wilson says:

    Please do post the link to Dr. Rosenberg’s study here as it becomes available. This research is fascinating and it would seem very necessary to convince the powers-that-be of the value of this approach. (Common sense doesn’t seem to be enough to do it!)

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