Objective: This study designed to evaluate the patient’s satisfaction in patients managed by nurse and rheumatologist in Chinese rheumatoid arthritis patients attending rheumatology outpatient clinic.
Methods: In this single center randomized study, RA patients (≥ 18 year) who satisfied criteria of American College of Rheumatology visited at Department of orthopedic surgery, Weihai Central Hospital, Weihai, China between January 2010-December 2015 were analysed. Primary objective of study was to evaluate satisfaction of patients using Leeds Satisfaction Questionnaire (LSQ). Secondary objective of study was to evaluate DAS 28 score, VAS score for pain, fatigue and morning stiffness before and after each consultation over the period of 12 months.
Results: A total of 220 RA patients in two groups (n=110 in each group) were analysed. Demographic and baseline characteristic were comparable. Overall patient satisfaction was significantly higher in patients who were assigned in nurse care group as compared to rheumatologist throughout the study period (P<0.001). Improvement in disease activity (reduction in DAS20 score) over 12 months of follow period was significantly greater in nurse-led care group when compared to rheumatologist-led care (P<0.001). Also there was significantly greater improvement in pain, fatigue and duration of morning stiffness associated with RA over 12 months of follow period in nurse-led care group when compared to rheumatologist-led care (P<0.001).
Conclusion: Our preliminary finding suggested that the RA patients managed by NLC had significantly higher patient satisfaction, and had significantly greater improvement in disease symptoms than rheumatologist-led care.