Implementation of EQ-5D-5L as a routine outcome measure in Community Outpatient and Specialized Rehabilitation Services

J Patient Rep Outcomes. 2021 Oct 12;5(Suppl 2):103. doi: 10.1186/s41687-021-00369-z.


Rehabilitation is a person-centred approach that optimizes functioning to reduce impairments in individuals with illness, injury or disability. Patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) have a role in rehabilitation to inform clinical practice, enhance patient-centered care, support health services programming, direct performance measurement, and contribute to quality improvement. A Canadian provincial health system implemented a Rehabilitation Model of Care that provides a real-world perspective on the adoption of a standardized PROM, the EuroQol EQ-5D-5L, in the community rehabilitation setting. This article will provide an overview of PROMs implementation in the community rehabilitation context, and discuss key facilitators and challenges to implementation within the 18 early adopter sites and with the spread and scale to 152 urban and rural sites. A change management approach, contextualized local coaching and strong leadership support were facilitators in the initial phases of implementation. Adequate resources and infrastructure from technological platforms for electronic data capture and visualization were assets in addition to clinical teams that had existing strong quality improvement cultures to collect PROMS in existing workflows. Challenges to implementation include the clinical relevance of the PROM, difficulty with contextualization to suit diverse clinical and programmatic teams, and the need for further knowledge sharing activities to build readiness for adoption. The implementation of PROMs in community rehabilitation has added value at the clinical (micro), programmatic (meso) and health system level (macro). Clinically, it has promoted the importance of incorporating the patients' voice into outcome measurement. At the program level, the cultivation of a data informed learning community was fostered as teams make improvements and use data to inform future program growth or service changes. Finally, at the health system level, data visualization promotes transparency and accountability with performance across the province and the standardized use of the EQ-5D-5L provides a consistent language to promote measurement throughout the health system.