Using a theory-informed approach to guide the initial development of a post-tuberculosis care package in British Columbia, Canada Romanowski, Kamila; Cook, Victoria J.; Gilbert, M.; Johnston, James C.
Background: The importance of addressing the long-term needs of tuberculosis (TB) survivors is gaining increasing attention. One promising approach to improving post-TB care is implementing a post-TB care package. With a specific focus on the perspectives of healthcare providers in British Columbia, Canada, this study aimed to (1) determine a set of components to be included in a post-TB care package, (2) explore barriers and facilitators influencing their implementation, and (3) propose potential solutions to overcome identified challenges. Methods Employing a multi-method approach guided by the Theoretical Domains Framework, we first conducted virtual workshops with TB care providers and utilized a modified Delphi process to establish a preliminary list of care package components. Then, we surveyed healthcare providers using closed-ended, Likert-scale questions to identify implementation barriers and enablers. Lastly, we mapped the identified barriers and enablers to establish behaviour change techniques to identify possible solutions to overcome the challenges identified. Results Eleven participants attended virtual workshops, and 23 of 51 (45.1%) healthcare providers completed questionnaires. Identified components of the post-TB care package included: 1. Linking people with TB to a primary care provider if they do not have one. 2. Referring people with pulmonary TB for an end-of-treatment chest x-ray and pulmonary function testing. 3. Referring people with TB who smoke to a smoking cessation specialist. 4. Sharing a one-page post-TB information sheet with the patient's primary care provider, including a summary of post-TB health concerns, complications, and recommendations to prioritize age-appropriate screening for cardiovascular disease, lung cancer, and depression. Survey results indicated that domain scores for ‘environment, context, and resources’ were the lowest, suggesting potential implementation barriers. Care navigation services to help individuals overcome health system barriers while transitioning from TB care, information leaflets, and checklists summarizing key post-TB health concerns for patients and healthcare providers to help facilitate discussions may help overcome the identified barriers. Conclusion Healthcare providers in British Columbia acknowledge that post-TB care is integral to comprehensive health care but are limited by time and resources. Care navigation services, a post-TB checklist, and patient information leaflets may help resolve some of these barriers.
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