Background: The management of people with multiple chronic conditions challenges health-care systems designed around single conditions. There is international consensus that care for multimorbidity should be patient-centred, focus on quality of life, and promote self-management towards agreed goals. However, there is little evidence about the effectiveness of this approach. Our hypothesis was that the patient-centred, so-called 3D approach (based on dimensions of health, depression, and drugs) for patients with multimorbidity would improve their health-related quality of life, which is the ultimate aim of the 3D intervention.
Methods: We did this pragmatic cluster-randomised trial in general practices in England and Scotland. Practices were randomly allocated to continue usual care (17 practices) or to provide 6-monthly comprehensive 3D reviews, incorporating patient-centred strategies that reflected international consensus on best care (16 practices). Randomisation was computer-generated, stratified by area, and minimised by practice deprivation and list size. Adults with three or more chronic conditions were recruited. The primary outcome was quality of life (assessed with EQ-5D-5L) after 15 months' follow-up. Participants were not masked to group assignment, but analysis of outcomes was blinded. We analysed the primary outcome in the intention-to-treat population, with missing data being multiply imputed. This trial is registered as an International Standard Randomised Controlled Trial, number ISRCTN06180958.
Findings: Between May 20, 2015, and Dec 31, 2015, we recruited 1546 patients from 33 practices and randomly assigned them to receive the intervention (n=797) or usual care (n=749). In our intention-to-treat analysis, there was no difference between trial groups in the primary outcome of quality of life (adjusted difference in mean EQ-5D-5L 0·00, 95% CI -0·02 to 0·02; p=0·93). 78 patients died, and the deaths were not considered as related to the intervention.
Interpretation: To our knowledge, this trial is the largest investigation of the international consensus about optimal management of multimorbidity. The 3D intervention did not improve patients' quality of life.
- Chronic Disease/psychology
- Follow-Up Studies
- Interdisciplinary Communication
- Intersectoral Collaboration
- Middle Aged
- Patient Care Team
- Patient-Centered Care
- Quality of Life/psychology
- Self Care/psychology