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Patients' Satisfaction with Remote Asthma Medical Follow-Up Before and During the COVID-19 Pandemic


Patients' Satisfaction with Remote Asthma Medical Follow-Up Before and During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Telemed J E Health. 2023 Feb 13. doi: 10.1089/tmj.2022.0370. Online ahead of print.


Background: The COVID-19 pandemic forced the change of health care services, favoring the use of remote consultations. Objective: To assess the differences in asthma medical follow-up before and during the COVID-19 pandemic and to evaluate patients' satisfaction regarding remote consultations. Methods: A cross-sectional, observational, web-based study, including 335 Portuguese patients with self-reported physician-diagnosed asthma, was conducted. The survey was available between February and May 2021 and included questions about patients' sociodemographic and clinical characteristics and follow-up (consultations' type and satisfaction in 2019 and 2020). Satisfaction was assessed using 10 statements on different aspects of patient experience (Likert scale 1-5), with a total score between 10 and 50. Results: The 335 patients included had a median [P25-P75] age of 27 [21-43] years and 75% had uncontrolled asthma. Overall, fewer participants had consultations during the pandemic compared to 2019 (161 vs. 185; p < 0.001). Most patients had ≥1 face-to-face consultation both in 2020 and 2019 (131 vs. 184; p < 0.001). In 2020, there was an increase in the proportion of participants reporting ≥1 remote (telephonic plus video) consultation (40% vs. 3%; p < 0.001). This increase was mainly attributed to the use of telephonic consultation (38% vs. video 3%, p < 0.001). Patients' satisfaction was similar in 2020 and 2019 for face-to-face consultations (44 [38-47] and 44 [39-48], p = 0.136). In 2020, satisfaction with remote consultations was slightly lower than with face-to-face (43 [37-46] vs. 44 [38-47], p < 0.001). Conclusions: Even though patients were slightly more satisfied with face-to-face consultations, remote consultations can be an alternative in follow-up services for patients with asthma in the near future.

PMID:36780001 | DOI:10.1089/tmj.2022.0370

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