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Interstitial Lung Disease
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Palliative interventions need to improve preparedness in caregivers, patients with IPF

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A nurse-led early palliative care intervention program for patients with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) and their caregivers was effective in improving knowledge and advanced care planning in patients and improving knowledge preparedness, and confidence in caregivers, according to a study.

In this study, patients diagnosed with IPF in the last year and their caregivers were randomized to receive the intervention program, “A Program of SUPPORT” or usual care. A total of 76 patient/caregiver groups were eligible with 13% not having an identified caregiver. Of those eligible, only 56% enrolled, with 24% of eligible groups saying they were interested in participating “but too fatigued to stay after their clinic visit.” Twenty percent of participants died before the study was complete. Participants accepted the program and a significant improvement in caregiver’s knowledge, disease preparedness, and confidence in caring for the patient. Patients also had an improvement in knowledge and advance care planning completion.

The authors concluded that “Future research should identify additional strategies, including telemedicine resources to reach additional patients and their caregivers earlier in their disease course.”

Reference
Lindell KO, Klein SJ, Veatch MS, et al. Nurse-led palliative care improves knowledge and preparedness in caregivers of patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. Ann Am Thorac Soc. 2021; DOI: 10.1513/AnnalsATS.202012-1494OC. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34003726.

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