Aims Cow’s milk protein allergy (CMPA) affects approximately 7% of children under 2 years and can be IgE or non-IgE mediated. NICE recommends involvement of paediatric dietitian in all CMPA patients to guide parents in regards to appropriate dietary avoidance, intake of alternative calcium sources and to ensure adequate growth and nutrition. CMPA group sessions were trialled to accommodate the increasing dietitian referrals from both primary and secondary care. We aim to evaluate the effectiveness of these group sessions based on patient satisfaction survey filled by participants.
Methods CMPA group dietetic sessions held between November 2015 and July 2016 were reviewed retrospectively. Only non-IgE mediated patients were included. Patients with multiple allergies were excluded from the group sessions. Referrals, attendances and patient feedback from participants were collated. Content of the sessions were fairly standardised and patients received information leaflet regarding CMPA and also a milk challenge ladder. Feedback was obtained immediately after the session using a self-designed patient satisfaction questionnaire, rating several questions regarding the organisation and content of the session, from 1(worst) to 5(best).
Results A total of 69 referrals fulfilled the criteria above and were invited to the group appointments. 89% were from secondary care, and 11% from general practitioners or health visitors. 9 group sessions were held. 58%(n=40) of those invited attended, ranging from 2 to 7 participants per session, and the mean attendance was 4 participants per session. Feedback was successfully obtained from 36 participants (90%). On average, 85%(mean=30.4) were extremely satisfied with the overall organisation of the session, found the session useful, and felt more confident in managing CMPA.
Conclusion There was excellent uptake of participants into the CMPA group sessions. High satisfaction rates were obtained from the participants’ survey highlighting the success of these group sessions. Group sessions are both cost-effective and time-effective as it reduces the burden and waiting times for dietitian appointments, and allowed information sharing to a larger number of patients. Further study to assess the longer-term benefit of the above group sessions will be carried out.
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