Palliative Care Always: Hepatology-Virtual Primary Palliative Care Training for Hepatologists. Hepatology communications DeNofrio, J. C., Verma, M., Kosinski, A. S., Navarro, V., Taddei, T. H., Volk, M. L., Bakitas, M., Ramchandran, K. 2021


Palliative care (PC) benefits patients with serious illness including end-stage liver disease (ESLD). As part of a cluster randomized trial, hepatologists were trained to deliver primary palliative care to patients with ESLD using an online course, Palliative Care Always: Hepatology (PCA:Hep). Here we present a multimethod formative evaluation(feasibility, knowledge acquisition, self-efficacy, and practice patterns) of PCA:Hep. Feasibility was measured by completion of coursework and achieving a course grade of >80%. Knowledge acquisition was measured through assessments before and throughout the course. Pre/post-course surveys were conducted to determine self-efficacy and practice patterns. The hepatologists (n=39) enrolled in a 12-week online course and spent 1-3hours on the course weekly. The course was determined to be feasible as 97% successfully completed the course and 100% passed. The course was acceptable to participants; 91.7 % reported a positive course experience and satisfaction with knowledge gained (91.6%). The pre/post knowledge assessment showed an improvement of 6.0% (pre 85.9% to post 91.9%, 95% CI [2.8, 9.2], P=0.001). Self-efficacy increased significantly (P<0.001) in psychological symptom management, hospice, and psychosocial support. A year after training, over 80% of the hepatologists reported integrating a variety of PC skills into routine patient care. Conclusion: PCA:Hep is feasible, acceptable, and improves learner knowledge and confidence in palliative care skills. This is a viable method to teach primary PC skills to specialists caring for patients with ESLD.

View details for DOI 10.1002/hep4.1849

View details for PubMedID 34719137