Patient-Generated Goals in Mental Health Care: Better Outcomes?

Mental Health, Children and Community Care


Kathleen Pajer

kpajer@cheo.on.ca

613-737-7600 ext 2327

CHAMO, Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario, University of Ottawa FOM

Highlights

CHA-18-002 Our study using patients and families to develop their own patient-reported outcomes (PROs), i.e. Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Realistic, Time-Based (SMART) goals to track during treatment until completion (the outcome) has the potential to significantly advance research in PROs. The patient Goal Based Outcomes (GBO) approach also will empower patients in their care. At this point, we have 40 patients enrolled in our RCT and two have completed treatment.

Abstract

CHA-18-002 Researchers believe that clinical care can be improved by engaging patients and families directly in planning the care process. Engagement efforts have included asking patients/families to provide information about whether they are getting better. But what does “getting better” mean? The merits of surveys, questionnaires, or rating scales have been widely discussed. Should they be disorder-specific or global? What should we do if patients have difficulty reading or understanding these instruments? Investigators in the UK have proposed a simple solution: ask the patients and families what their primary goal treatment goal is and track progress together on that goal (Goal-Based Outcomes or GBO). Although there has been some work to suggest that this is helpful, it has never been tested in a controlled way. Our study is a randomized controlled trial to test whether GBO will improve clinical care in child and youth mental health. Participants are randomized into the GBO intervention or treatment-as-usual. The study began recruitment in November 2018 through the CHEO Outpatient Mental Health Services and in its early stages with 40 participants enrolled. Recruitment and data collection is ongoing. Although we will use this in child and youth mental health care, if it is successful, it can be tested and applied in any care setting with any type of medical problem. This could change practice at CHEO and throughout Canada.

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