New patient-reported experience measure for children with allergic disease

During childhood, a third of children in the UK will be affected by an allergic condition, making it the most common chronic childhood ailment. Many suffer from multiple allergic comorbidities, such as eczema, asthma, food allergies and hay fever. Unfortunately, access to specialist allergy care is difficult due to underprovision of services. Of those assessed, there is evidence of considerable variability in the quality of allergy care, likely having a negative impact on clinical outcomes, patients’ experiences and safety.

In response, the Department of Health commissioned the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) to define care pathways for children with allergic conditions. This includes the development of allergy-specific patient-reported experience measures (PREMs). PREMs allow patients to report on their experience of care rather than health outcomes. Using PREMs to collect feedback, clinicians, service providers, and commissioners can accurately evaluate current care and shape future service provision.

Partnering with Picker, the RCPCH Allergy Care Pathway Project team developed the PREMs using established survey-development methodology. In a study published by BMJ, Picker presents the first disease-specific PREM for children with allergic conditions, an essential tool and key quality indicator for future planning and commissioning of services.

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