Introduction The UK IBD Audit has now completed its 3rd round with continued marked variation in the resource and quality of care for IBD patients. This analysis of the national data aims to measure the quality of care for patients in centres with: a IBD nurse >1 WTE, IBD nurse <1 WTE and those with no IBD nurse; to demonstrate the impact of the IBD nurse in terms of quality of care; and how the role assists in meeting specific aims of the White Paper (Equity and excellence: Liberating the NHS, 2010).
Methods A comparison was carried out of the 2010 audit results of hospitals with no IBD nurse, <1 WTE nurse and those with ≥1 nurses. It cannot directly be inferred that the IBD nurse is the causative factor in the reduction in hospital admissions or improvements in care. The results also do not reflect the number of nurse sessions per week dedicated to IBD care or long the IBD nurse had been in post.
Results There was a significant reduction in the number of patients admitted to hospital with an IBD nurse in post and a difference in the range and choice of care delivery. More patient education was offered in the presence of the IBD nurse (28%, 60%, 74%, p<0.001), more patient involvement in service development (12%, 20%, 39%, p<0.001), clearer guidance for patients to seek a 2nd opinion (93%, 20%, 45%, p<0.009) and clinical data more likely to be captured (23%, 50%, 61%, p<0.001).
Conclusion The NHS White paper states reducing avoidable hospital admissions, increasing the proportion of people with a long term condition to self care and the ability to offer choice of care are High Level Outcomes which lead to commissionable services. The presence of an IBD nurse, within the IBD team, correlates with fewer admissions, the availability of self management programmes and greater overall choice in care provision and new modes of care delivery.
Competing interests None declared.