Entete 3

Updated Cochrane Review: Interventions for improving outcomes in patients with multimorbidity in primary care and community settings


By Susan M Smith, Emma Wallace, Tom O’Dowd, Martin Fortin
This Cochrane systematic review aimed to identify and summarise the existing evidence on the effectiveness of interventions to improve clinical and mental health outcomes and patient-reported outcomes including health-related quality of life for people with multimorbidity in primary care and community settings.
The Cochrane library have just published an update of the original 2012 review and for this update the literature was searched up to September 2015. In total, we identified 18 generally well-designed randomised controlled trials meeting the eligibility criteria, 8 of which were identified in the updated searches. Nine of the 18 studies focused on specific combinations of health conditions (comorbidity studies), for example diabetes and heart disease. The other nine studies included people with a broad range of conditions (multimorbidity studies) although they tended to focus on elderly people. The majority of studies examined interventions that involved changes to the organisation of care delivery although some studies had more patient-focused interventions.
Key results
Overall the results regarding the effectiveness of interventions were mixed. There were no clear positive improvements in clinical outcomes, health service use, medication adherence, patient-related health behaviours, health professional behaviours or costs. There were modest improvements in mental health outcomes from seven studies that targeted people with depression, and in functional outcomes from two studies targeting functional difficulties in participants. Overall the results indicate that it is difficult to improve outcomes for people with multiple conditions. The review suggests that interventions that are designed to target specific risk factors (for example treatment for depression) or interventions that focus on difficulties that people experience with daily functioning (for example, physiotherapy treatment to improve capacity for physical activity) may be more effective.
Authors’ conclusions:
This review identifies the emerging evidence to support policy for the management of people with multimorbidity and common comorbidities in primary care and community settings. There are remaining uncertainties about the effectiveness of interventions for people with multimorbidity in general due to the relatively small number of RCTs conducted in this area to date, with mixed findings overall. However, several large ongoing studies were identified that will add to the slowly emerging evidence base. The current evidence from this review suggest an improvement in health outcomes if interventions can be targeted at risk factors such as depression, or specific functional difficulties in people with multimorbidity.
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Citation: Smith SM, Wallace E, O’Dowd T, Fortin M. Interventions for improving outcomes in patients with multimorbidity in primary care and community settings. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2016, Issue 3. Art. No.: CD006560. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD006560.pub3.

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