Background: An increased understanding of the transition process from pediatric to adult transplant care may inform strategies for facilitating the transfer of patients and ultimately improve outcomes of care.
Objective: To explore the transition process from pediatric to adult transplant care from the perspective of young adults.
Study design: Using a qualitative case study approach, data were collected from transplant recipients through organ-specific focus groups, from transplant coordinators and nurse practitioners through interviews, and from electronic documents. Data were analyzed using an editorial format.
Results: The analysis identified 5 elements of transition: There to Here, Getting Ready, Frame of Mind, Making It Easier, and Giving Back. In addition, threaded throughout the elements were the themes People Are Important, Expectations of Us, and Information We Need.
Conclusions: The transition for young people from a pediatric to an adult transplant center can be difficult and often traumatic. Young adults who transfer to adult care need to be better prepared for the adult center, made aware of the differences, and introduced to team members before the transfer. Transition programs that aim to improve the transition process should be developed for these patients.