• Evaluation of NCD service integrated into a general OPD and HIV service in Matsapha, Eswatini, 2017

      Ansbro, Eimhin; Meyer, Inga; Okello, Velephi; Verdecchia, Maria; Keus, Kees; Piening, Turid; Sadique, Zia; Roberts, Bayard; Perel, Pablo; Jobanputra, Kiran; et al. (2018-09)
      Background: Swaziland faces a growing noncommunicable disease (NCD) burden alongside HIV and TB epidemics. MSF provided primary care services, HIV and TB programmes at Matsapha MOH comprehensive clinic from 2011 to 2018. With MOH collaboration, MSF integrated NCD care into general outpatient (OPD), HIV and TB services in April 2016. A retrospective analysis of routine clinical and programmatic data was undertaken to examine programme processes, effectiveness and costs in order to strengthen the service, facilitate handover and inform MSF and MOH policy and scale-up. The specific objectives were to: 1) describe the care model; 2) examine its effectiveness; 3) examine predictors of NCD treatment outcomes, including HIV status; and 4) determine incremental total and unit service costs. Methods: We undertook a retrospective evaluation of routine data from Matsapha Comprehensive Care Clinic, located outside Manzini, Eswatini’s largest city. This comprised: care model description; routine cohort data analysis to investigate effectiveness of care and predictors of reaching clinical targets; and incremental costing analysis. Enrolment criteria included: a diagnosis of established cardiovascular disease (CVD), hypertension, diabetes mellitus (DM) types 1 or 2, chronic respiratory disease; and committing to regular attendance. Routine clinical data of adults aged 18 or over, enrolled from July 2016 to July 2017, were analysed using descriptive statistics and logistic regression modelling. A costing analysis from the providers’ perspective utilised routine accounting, service and consumption data. Results: Model of care description: We implemented: staff training; locally adapted protocols; chronic care files; a revised appointment system and patient flow; and a new database. Doctors reviewed patients at first visit, and saw complex or unstable patients monthly, resulting in significant workload. Nurses reviewed stable patients three-monthly; patients requiring treatment initiation/adjustment, ad hoc blood testing or external referral were referred back to doctors. Thus, task sharing to nurses did not occur as intended. Specific health literacy, adherence support groups or lay counsellor involvement were lacking. Integrating NCD care resulted in longer consultation times. Repeated medication stock outs occurred despite MSF’s efforts to support the MOH supply chain. Routine cohort data analysis: Of 895 enrolled patients, mean age was 55 years (IQR 5.3 to 10.6); 66% were women, of whom 54.6% were obese. Mean follow-up was 8 months; 16.3% defaulted during the study period. The most common diagnoses at enrolment were: hypertension (85.7%) and DM type 2 (37.4%), asthma (3.8%) and DM type 1 (1.2%). 3 patients had known CVD; none had known chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. At last visit, 60.4% (n=608) of hypertensive patients and 63.3% (n=289) of diabetics were at target. Obesity and HIV positivity were weakly associated with an increased risk of uncontrolled hypertension. Descriptive costing analysis: Total 2016 incremental financial costs were: INT$437,228. The principle costs drivers were human resources (61% of total) and drugs (18%; insulin accounting for a quarter). Per patient per year (PPPY) incremental costs (INT$ 448.52) were similar to those reported for chronic HIV programmes. Conclusions and Lessons Learned: NCD care can be integrated into a HIV department and OPD setting in an MSFsupported primary care centre by utilising pre-existing structures, and can achieve acceptable intermediate clinical outcomes and retention rates at a cost that is similar to HIV programmes. The current model of NCD care is complex and time consuming, resulting in significant doctor workload. Streamlined, algorithm-driven protocols and work with the local government to extend prescribing rights for NCD medications to nurses may facilitate task sharing and decentralisation of care. Drug supply chain strengthening is required and advocacy around drug prices could reduce programme costs. Inclusion of specific treatment support and adherence counselling, learning lessons from HIV and TB care, is also essential to integrating NCD care into pre-existing services.
    • Mixed methods evaluation of MSF primary care based NCD service in Irbid, Jordon: February 2017 - February 2018

      Ansbro, Eimhin; Homan, Tobias; Jobanputra, Kiran; Rehr, Manuela; Ellithy, S; Quasim, Jamil; Tanni, Hashem; Garrett, Peter; Shoaib, Muhammad; Bil, Karla; et al. (2018-09)
      Non-communicable diseases (NCD) are the leading causes of mortality and morbidity among Syrian refugees in Jordan. Following the onset of the Syrian crisis in 2011, the Jordanian health system was overwhelmed by the chronic disease burden among this group. In response, in late 2014, Médecins sans Frontières Operational Centre Amsterdam (MSF-OCA) opened an NCD service at two primary care centres targeting non-camp based Syrian refugees and vulnerable Jordanians in Irbid, north Jordan, using a multi-disciplinary primary care model. The programme focused on the NCDs causing most deaths in pre-war Syria: cardiovascular disease (CVD), including hypertension, diabetes (DM), and chronic respiratory disease. The model evolved in response to patient needs, programmatic lessons learned and contextual changes. A programme evaluation was done, aiming to refine the model, generate evidence on its feasibility, acceptability and effectiveness and learn lessons to inform translation of a similar model of NCD care to comparable humanitarian settings.
    • Simplifying Cardiovascular Risk Assessment - mixed methods audit of MSF's NCD mission in Irbid, Jordan

      Collins, Dylan (2016-06-17)
      We undertook a mixed methods clinical audit with the aim of simplifying guidance for cardiovascular risk assessment in humanitarian settings