• 7Oct

    Patient experience to support people with multiple illnesses

    New guidelines issued by the National Institute for Health & Care Excellence (NICE) for managing patients with more than one long-term condition recommend a tailored approach to patient care focused on individual preferences, needs and priorities.

    To coincide with the guidelines, a new online resource has been launched to help patients with several long term conditions – multimorbidity – self-manage their treatment approaches across their multiple conditions and help influence the tailored nature of treatment required by NICE in the new guidelines.

    The healthtalk.org “living with multiple health problems” section presents patients’ experiences of coping with the complexities of multiple illnesses; users of the website are able to access more than 200 extracts in video, audio or written format from interviews with real patients discussing various aspects of living with multimorbidity as well as advice on self-management of treatments and juggling all the required medication across multiple conditions.

    Dr Gavin Daker-White, Research Fellow at The University of Manchester’s School of Health Sciences who led the analysis of the interviews for the web resource says:

    ”healthtalk.org aims to take users on a person-based journey through the issues of multimorbidity; users can see and hear 38 people sharing their stories about the effects of health problems on their lives and their experiences of using health services. They talk about how they deal with the challenges brought by multiple health problems, for example by prioritising which health problem is the most important. They talk about where the health service has worked well for them and where it hasn’t. Their advice for other patients and recommendations for improving care are offered – along with advice on taking control of their multiple medicines and other treatments.”

    The Centre for Primary Care has produced a leaflet outlining the safe, integrated, and effective care for people with multimorbidity.

    It is estimated that approximately one quarter of the UK population are living with two or more health conditions – including diabetes, arthritis and heart disease – and this figure is set to rise as the population ages.

    A longer version of this news report originally appeared on The University of Manchester website.