Development of a Hematology-General Medicine Hybrid Team to Improve Care of Patients With Sickle Cell Disease

Link to article at PubMed

Acad Med. 2024 Feb 27. doi: 10.1097/ACM.0000000000005671. Online ahead of print.


PROBLEM: Approximately 100,000 individuals in the United States have sickle cell disease (SCD). These individuals face multiple barriers to equitable care. At Brigham and Women's Hospital, existing health inequities for these patients were compounded by admitting, rounding, and team structures that assigned patients with SCD to multiple medicine teams with a hematologist attending, leading to delays in patient care and gaps in residents' hematology knowledge.

APPROACH: A hematology-general medicine hybrid team was created in September 2021 to enhance trainee knowledge, skill, and confidence in managing hematology conditions and improve the quality of care delivered to individuals with SCD. This allowed for regionalization of patients with classical hematology conditions to specific hospital floors under the care of one team with a hematologist as the attending of record.

OUTCOMES: From October 1, 2021-January 11, 2022, the majority (745/824, 90%) of in-hospital days for patients with a primary hematology diagnosis were under the care of the hematology-general medicine hybrid team. Regionalization to the home floor of the hybrid team was achieved on 331 (40%) of these 824 hospital days, consistent with regionalization rates for other teams. From October 1, 2021-September 30, 2022, there were 128 unique patients with SCD admitted over 511 encounters and cared for by approximately 78 residents and 12 medical students. Feedback from residents reported improved knowledge in the management of hematology conditions, especially SCD, and hematology attendings reported increased teaching opportunities.

NEXT STEPS: The authors are working on a comprehensive analysis of the hybrid team's impact on trainee skill and confidence in managing SCD. The authors believe that this model can be replicated at other institutions to optimize trainee education, consolidate care, and address implicit bias against patients with SCD, even with the hematology attending as a consultant instead of as the attending of record.

PMID:38412482 | DOI:10.1097/ACM.0000000000005671

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