Outcomes of a Structured Ambulatory Care Health Care Transition Approach in a Large Children's Hospital.

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Publication Date



DOI: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2023.06.005


PURPOSE: Without a structured health-care transition (HCT) process, youths with chronic conditions face increased morbidity, care gaps, and dissatisfaction. This article documents the process and outcomes of implementing a standardized approach in a large children's hospital.

METHODS: Children's Mercy Kansas City adopted Got Transition's Six Core Elements of Health Care Transition and established a system-wide implementation plan, between 2015 and 2019, involving leadership buy-in, consumer engagement, infrastructure improvements, and quality improvement efforts. Outcomes measured included the number of youths aged 12-21 years receiving transition readiness assessments and participating in goal setting, receiving counseling, and receiving a transfer order, if appropriate. Also, Division-specific process outcome surveys were conducted annually using Got Transition's Current Assessment of HCT Activities.

RESULTS: A total of 8,099 unique patients received a structured HCT intervention using the Six Core Element approach over the 5-year period. From 2015 to 2019 the average annual growth was: 207% for completion of transition readiness and goals assessments, 243% for charting of HCT discussions, and 105% for transfer orders. In 2015, 3/20 (15%) divisions were implementing this HCT intervention; in 2019, 17/20 (85%) divisions were implementing it, representing a 467% growth. Division participation in measuring HCT implementation also increased by 89% from 9/20 in 2016 to 17/20 in 2019. The average Current Assessment of HCT Activities scores increased by 35% from 14.55/32 to 19.67/32 during that time.

DISCUSSION: This hospital-wide program demonstrates that a standardized HCT process can be successfully implemented in a diverse group of outpatient pediatric primary and subspecialty care settings.

Journal Title

The Journal of adolescent health : official publication of the Society for Adolescent Medicine





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Adolescents and young adults; Children's hospital; Health-care transition; Quality improvement; Six core elements of HCT; System-wide improvement

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