Patient-reported outcome measures as a new application in the Swedish Renal Registry: health-related quality of life through RAND-36

Clin Kidney J. 2019 Jul 25;13(3):442-449. doi: 10.1093/ckj/sfz084. eCollection 2020 Jun.


Background: Although patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) are gaining increased interest in developing health care quality and are a useful tool in person-centered care, their use in routine care is still limited. The aim of this study is to describe the implementation and initial results of PROMs via the Swedish Renal Registry (SRR) on a national level.

Methods: After testing and piloting the electronic PROM application, nationwide measures were carried out in 2017 for completing the RAND-36 questionnaire online or by paper in a wide range of chronic kidney disease (CKD) patients (Stages 3-5, dialysis and transplantation) through the SRR. Cross-sectional results during the first year were analyzed by descriptive statistics and stratified by treatment modality.

Results: A total of 1378 patients from 26 of 68 renal units (39%) completed the questionnaire. The response rate for all participating hemodialysis units was 38.9%. The CKD patients had an impaired health profile compared with a Swedish general population, especially regarding physical functions and assessed general health (GH). Transplanted patients had the highest scores, whereas patients on dialysis treatment had the lowest scores. The youngest age group assessed their physical function higher and experienced fewer physical limitations and less bodily pain than the other age groups but assessed their GH and vitality (VT) relatively low. The oldest age group demonstrated the lowest health profile but rated their mental health higher than the other age groups. The older the patient, the smaller the difference compared with persons of the same age in the general population.

Conclusions: Nationwide, routine collection of PROMs is feasible in Sweden. However, greater emphasis is needed on motivating clinical staff to embrace the tool and its possibilities in executing person-centered care. CKD patients demonstrate impaired health-related quality of life, especially regarding limitations related to physical problems, GH and VT/energy/fatigue.

Keywords: chronic kidney disease; epidemiology; health-related quality of life; patient-centered care; person-centered care.