A decade on: has the use of integrated care pathways made a difference in Lanarkshire?

J Nurs Manag. 2006 Oct;14(7):508-20. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2934.2006.00707.x.


This article aimed to: (1) review the work carried out in Lanarkshire between 1996 and 1999 on a Scottish Executive funded project and (2) to discuss the situation from 1999 to 2006. (1) This 3-year project led to the successful development and implementation of over 100 integrated care pathways in an urban teaching hospital (Glasgow) and a district general hospital (Lanarkshire) and was the first in-depth study of integrated care pathways to be undertaken in Scotland. The main report on the project was produced in 1999 (Clinical Audit and Quality using Integrated Pathways of Care) and reported increased adherence to British Thoracic Society and Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network guidelines and multiple best practice statements, and improved standards of documentation. The general findings were that process indicators were improved by integrated care pathway use and there was some suggestion of improved length of stay with no apparent effect on outcome. Evidence was found that integrated care pathways have made a difference for both patients and staff. (2) This provides an update of integrated care pathway development in a changing environment within NHS Lanarkshire and examines some of the key factors for success.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Asthma / therapy
  • Child
  • Critical Pathways*
  • Delivery of Health Care, Integrated / organization & administration*
  • Delivery of Health Care, Integrated / standards
  • Documentation
  • Guideline Adherence
  • Health Plan Implementation
  • Hospitalization
  • Hospitals, District / standards*
  • Hospitals, Teaching / standards*
  • Humans
  • Mental Disorders / therapy
  • Organizational Case Studies
  • Organizational Innovation
  • Outcome and Process Assessment, Health Care*
  • Quality Indicators, Health Care
  • Reference Standards
  • Scotland