Transplant Trial Watch

Video clinics versus standard face-to-face appointments for liver transplant patients in routine hospital outpatient care: study protocol for a pragmatic randomised evaluation of myVideoClinic.

O'Connell Francischetto E, Damery S, et al.

Trials, 2018; 19(1): 574.


Aims
To evaluate whether a video clinic improved patient satisfaction compared to standard face-to-face appointments for liver transplant patients.

Interventions
Patients will be randomised in 1:1 to video clinic appointments (intervention) or standard face-to-face appointments (control). The intervention group will have outpatient appointments from home via a secure video link. All patients will complete baseline questionnaires before randomisation and electronic follow-up questionnaires after each follow-up appointment.

Participants
180 clinically stable liver patients at 1 to 5 years post-transplant.

Outcomes
The primary outcome is the difference in scores between groups for three domains of patient satisfaction (convenience of location; getting through to the office by phone; length of time waiting) assessed via a modified Visit-Specific Satisfaction Instrument. Secondary outcomes include quality of life (EQ-5D-5L), costs, clinical contacts and user experience.

Follow-up
Up to 12 months

CET Conclusions
This single-centre randomised controlled trial protocol describes the planned evaluation of myVideoClinic versus standard face-to-face appointment in stable liver transplant patients 1-5 year posttransplant. The primary aim is to improve patient satisfaction relating to the convenience of location, getting through to the office by phone and length of time waiting. One of the secondary aims will be an evaluation of the costs of myVideoClinic and a qualitative study will explore patient, family/carer, and healthcare professionals’ experiences and perceptions. Patients will be randomised according to a computer-generated sequence however there is no description whether allocation will be concealed. Cross-over between study groups will be recorded and data will be analysed according to intention to treat. Patients and staff will not be blinded however the statistician analysing the primary outcome will be blinded. The sample size is based on a clinically important difference of 10 points on the patient satisfaction scale (80% power and an alpha of 0.05). Applying an attrition rate of 30% based on a similar trial, the required sample size is 90 patients per group. The expected recruitment period will be 14 months.

Trial registration
ISRCTN - 14093266

Funding source
Non-industry funded