1*Department of Psychology, Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama; and †Division of Developmental and Behavioral Sciences and Division of Gastroenterology, Children's Mercy Kansas City, Kansas City, Missouri.
Although practice guidelines have been published for transition to adult care among general chronic illness populations and specific to pediatric inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), little is known about current transition practices in IBD care. This study presents data characterizing current transition practices as reported by a national sample of pediatric providers in the United States.
One hundred forty-one pediatric providers completed an online survey designed to assess current transition practices, barriers and challenges to developing and maintaining transition programming, and desired resources to improve transition services.
Practices varied greatly in terms of when providers begin discussing transition and transfer, age at transfer to adult care, and patient supports provided to facilitate transition. Multiple disciplines were often involved in transition programming and 75.9% reported using objective assessment of patient transition readiness. Knowledge and application of published transition practice guidelines was limited, and few respondents reported having a written transition policy at their institution (14.2%). 99.3% of respondents reported barriers to their transition programming efforts. Additional time and instrumental supports were the most common desired resources to support transition efforts.
Variability in IBD transition programming, practices, and policies reflect the emerging nature of clinical practice in this area. Understanding the current state of transition programming can inform future programming. Efforts to identify evidence-based practices in transition to adult care are needed.