How have researchers defined and used the concept of 'continuity of care' for chronic conditions in the context of resource-constrained settings? A scoping review of existing literature and a proposed conceptual framework

Lana Meiqari, Tammam Al-Oudat, Dirk Essink, Fedde Scheele, Pamela Wright

Research output: Contribution to JournalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

BACKGROUND Within the context of the growing burden of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) globally, there is limited evidence on how researchers have explored the response to chronic health needs in the context of health policy and systems in low- and middle-income countries. Continuity of care (CoC) is one concept that represents several elements of a long-term model of care. This scoping review aims to map and describe the state of knowledge regarding how researchers in resource-constrained settings have defined and used the concept of CoC for chronic conditions in primary healthcare. METHODS This scoping review adopted the modified framework for interpretive scoping literature reviews. A systematic literature search in PubMed was performed, followed by a study selection process and data extraction, analysis and synthesis. Extracted data regarding the context of using CoC and the definition of CoC were analysed inductively to identify similar patterns; based on this, articles were divided into groups. MaxQDA was then used to re-code each article with themes according to the CoC definition to perform a cross-case synthesis under each identified group. RESULTS A total of 55 peer-reviewed articles, comprising reviews or commentaries and qualitative or quantitative studies, were included. The number of articles has increased over the years. Five groups were identified as those (1) reflecting a change across stages or systems of care, (2) mentioning continuity or lack of continuity without a detailed definition, (3) researching CoC in HIV/AIDS programmes and its scaling up to support management of NCDs, (4) researching CoC in NCD management, and (5) measuring CoC with validated questionnaires. CONCLUSION Research or policy documents need to provide an explicit definition of CoC when this terminology is used. A framework for CoC is suggested, acknowledging three components for CoC (i.e. longitudinal care, the nature of the patient-provider relationship and coordinated care) while considering relevant contextual factors, particularly access and quality.
Original languageEnglish
Article number27
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalHealth Research Policy and Systems
Volume17
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 7 Mar 2019

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Continuity of Patient Care
Research Personnel
Long-Term Care
Disease Management
Health Policy
PubMed
Terminology
Primary Health Care
Patient Care
Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome
HIV

Keywords

  • Continuity of care
  • chronic care
  • health policy and systems
  • long-term care
  • primary healthcare
  • resource-constrained setting

Cite this

@article{344812d69ec14c33b104bbdc5974f881,
title = "How have researchers defined and used the concept of 'continuity of care' for chronic conditions in the context of resource-constrained settings? A scoping review of existing literature and a proposed conceptual framework",
abstract = "BACKGROUND Within the context of the growing burden of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) globally, there is limited evidence on how researchers have explored the response to chronic health needs in the context of health policy and systems in low- and middle-income countries. Continuity of care (CoC) is one concept that represents several elements of a long-term model of care. This scoping review aims to map and describe the state of knowledge regarding how researchers in resource-constrained settings have defined and used the concept of CoC for chronic conditions in primary healthcare. METHODS This scoping review adopted the modified framework for interpretive scoping literature reviews. A systematic literature search in PubMed was performed, followed by a study selection process and data extraction, analysis and synthesis. Extracted data regarding the context of using CoC and the definition of CoC were analysed inductively to identify similar patterns; based on this, articles were divided into groups. MaxQDA was then used to re-code each article with themes according to the CoC definition to perform a cross-case synthesis under each identified group. RESULTS A total of 55 peer-reviewed articles, comprising reviews or commentaries and qualitative or quantitative studies, were included. The number of articles has increased over the years. Five groups were identified as those (1) reflecting a change across stages or systems of care, (2) mentioning continuity or lack of continuity without a detailed definition, (3) researching CoC in HIV/AIDS programmes and its scaling up to support management of NCDs, (4) researching CoC in NCD management, and (5) measuring CoC with validated questionnaires. CONCLUSION Research or policy documents need to provide an explicit definition of CoC when this terminology is used. A framework for CoC is suggested, acknowledging three components for CoC (i.e. longitudinal care, the nature of the patient-provider relationship and coordinated care) while considering relevant contextual factors, particularly access and quality.",
keywords = "Continuity of care, chronic care, health policy and systems, long-term care, primary healthcare, resource-constrained setting",
author = "Lana Meiqari and Tammam Al-Oudat and Dirk Essink and Fedde Scheele and Pamela Wright",
year = "2019",
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AU - Meiqari, Lana

AU - Al-Oudat, Tammam

AU - Essink, Dirk

AU - Scheele, Fedde

AU - Wright, Pamela

PY - 2019/3/7

Y1 - 2019/3/7

N2 - BACKGROUND Within the context of the growing burden of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) globally, there is limited evidence on how researchers have explored the response to chronic health needs in the context of health policy and systems in low- and middle-income countries. Continuity of care (CoC) is one concept that represents several elements of a long-term model of care. This scoping review aims to map and describe the state of knowledge regarding how researchers in resource-constrained settings have defined and used the concept of CoC for chronic conditions in primary healthcare. METHODS This scoping review adopted the modified framework for interpretive scoping literature reviews. A systematic literature search in PubMed was performed, followed by a study selection process and data extraction, analysis and synthesis. Extracted data regarding the context of using CoC and the definition of CoC were analysed inductively to identify similar patterns; based on this, articles were divided into groups. MaxQDA was then used to re-code each article with themes according to the CoC definition to perform a cross-case synthesis under each identified group. RESULTS A total of 55 peer-reviewed articles, comprising reviews or commentaries and qualitative or quantitative studies, were included. The number of articles has increased over the years. Five groups were identified as those (1) reflecting a change across stages or systems of care, (2) mentioning continuity or lack of continuity without a detailed definition, (3) researching CoC in HIV/AIDS programmes and its scaling up to support management of NCDs, (4) researching CoC in NCD management, and (5) measuring CoC with validated questionnaires. CONCLUSION Research or policy documents need to provide an explicit definition of CoC when this terminology is used. A framework for CoC is suggested, acknowledging three components for CoC (i.e. longitudinal care, the nature of the patient-provider relationship and coordinated care) while considering relevant contextual factors, particularly access and quality.

AB - BACKGROUND Within the context of the growing burden of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) globally, there is limited evidence on how researchers have explored the response to chronic health needs in the context of health policy and systems in low- and middle-income countries. Continuity of care (CoC) is one concept that represents several elements of a long-term model of care. This scoping review aims to map and describe the state of knowledge regarding how researchers in resource-constrained settings have defined and used the concept of CoC for chronic conditions in primary healthcare. METHODS This scoping review adopted the modified framework for interpretive scoping literature reviews. A systematic literature search in PubMed was performed, followed by a study selection process and data extraction, analysis and synthesis. Extracted data regarding the context of using CoC and the definition of CoC were analysed inductively to identify similar patterns; based on this, articles were divided into groups. MaxQDA was then used to re-code each article with themes according to the CoC definition to perform a cross-case synthesis under each identified group. RESULTS A total of 55 peer-reviewed articles, comprising reviews or commentaries and qualitative or quantitative studies, were included. The number of articles has increased over the years. Five groups were identified as those (1) reflecting a change across stages or systems of care, (2) mentioning continuity or lack of continuity without a detailed definition, (3) researching CoC in HIV/AIDS programmes and its scaling up to support management of NCDs, (4) researching CoC in NCD management, and (5) measuring CoC with validated questionnaires. CONCLUSION Research or policy documents need to provide an explicit definition of CoC when this terminology is used. A framework for CoC is suggested, acknowledging three components for CoC (i.e. longitudinal care, the nature of the patient-provider relationship and coordinated care) while considering relevant contextual factors, particularly access and quality.

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KW - chronic care

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KW - primary healthcare

KW - resource-constrained setting

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