Sickle Cell Trevor Thompson Transition Project (ST3P-UP) protocol for managing care transitions: Methods and rationale

Contemp Clin Trials. 2023 Mar:126:107089. doi: 10.1016/j.cct.2023.107089. Epub 2023 Jan 18.


Background: Emerging adults with sickle cell disease (EASCD) experience significant challenges transitioning from pediatric to adult care. Acute care utilization increases, quality of life (QOL) declines, with an increased risk of mortality. Currently, there are no practice standards to guide emerging adults through the transition process. We are creating a structured transition education (STE) based program for EASCD by customizing the Six Core Elements (6 CE) of Health Care Transition model and are evaluating the effectiveness of adding peer mentoring (PM).

Methods: The Sickle Cell Trevor Thompson Transition Project (ST3P-UP) is an ongoing multi-site, cluster randomized clinical trial with a target enrollment of 537 EASCD aged 16 to 25 years in pediatric care. Each site (n = 14) comprises a pediatric clinic, adult clinic, and a sickle cell disease (SCD) community-based organization (CBO). Sites are randomized 1:1 to either STE or STE + PM. EASCDs are followed prospectively for 24 months. Rapid cycle plan-do-study-act quality improvement (QI) methods are used to implement the STE. The primary objective is to compare the effectiveness of STE + PM versus STE only at decreasing the number of acute care visits per year over 24 months. The secondary objectives are to compare overall healthcare utilization and patient-reported QOL outcomes at 24 months.

Conclusion: We aim to demonstrate the feasibility of using a QI approach to implement 6 CE-based practice standards at 14 disparate SCD clinical programs to guide EASCD through the transition process. We hypothesize that adding PM to the STE program will improve acute care reliance, QOL, and satisfaction with transition outcomes.

Keywords: Emerging adults; Peer mentoring; Quality improvement; Sickle cell disease; Transition.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial Protocol
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anemia, Sickle Cell* / complications
  • Anemia, Sickle Cell* / therapy
  • Child
  • Humans
  • Patient Acceptance of Health Care
  • Patient Transfer
  • Quality of Life
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Transition to Adult Care*