Delivering tertiary tuberculosis care virtually.
To assess the impact of a virtual multidisciplinary team (MDT) review panel in reducing travel for children with a rare disease (tuberculosis (TB)) without compromising clinical outcomes.Retrospective review of patients discussed in a virtual MDT panel. Independent pre-intervention and post-intervention data from Public Health England.Paediatric departments across North West England.Children aged <16 years with suspected TB infection/disease.Weekly, virtual MDT discussion between district paediatricians and a tertiary TB team.Care closer to home, time from presentation to treatment.45% (37 of 82) children received care closer to home. Median time from presentation to treatment reduced by 28% (from 18 to 13 days). 21% more children were diagnosed before developing symptoms (76% of children presented with symptoms pre-intervention, 55% post-intervention). 5 children incorrectly labelled with latent TB infection were treated for TB disease.A clinical network supported by virtual MDT reviews can improve treatment for children with rare diseases while providing care close to home.
Authors: Louise Turnbull, Christine Bell, Stefanie Davies, Fran Child