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Rheumatology outpatient nurse clinics: a valuable addition?

Temmink, D., Hutten, J.B.F., Francke, A.L., Rasker, J.J., Huijer Abu-Saad, H., Zee, J. van der. Rheumatology outpatient nurse clinics: a valuable addition? Arthritis Care and Research: 2001, 45(3), 280-286
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Objectives: "Transmural rheumatology nurse clinics," where nursing care is provided under the joint responsibility of a home care organization and a hospital, were recently introduced into Dutch health care. This article gives insight into outcomes of the transmural rheumatology nurse clinics. Methods: Patients with rheumatologic conditions who attended a transmural nurse clinic, in addition to receiving regular care, were compared with patients with rheumatologic conditions who received regular care only. The main outcome measures were the need for rheumatology-related information, the use of aids and adaptions, the use of health care services, and daily functioning. Results: Attending a transmural nurse clinic does not influence patients' need for information, the application of practical aids and adaptations, or daily functioning. However, attending a transmural nurse clinic does result in more contacts with rheumatologists and occupational therapists. Conclusions: Attending transmural nurse clinics does not result in major differences in outcomes compared with regular care. Further studies are needed to appreciate the long-term effects of transmural nurse clinics. (aut.ref.)