Background: Evidence-based strategies to improve outcomes in minority children with uncontrolled asthma discharged from the emergency department (ED) are needed.
Objectives: This multicenter pragmatic clinical trial was designed to compare an ED-only intervention (decision support tool), an ED-only intervention and home visits by community health workers for 6 months (ED-plus-home), and enhanced usual care (UC).
Methods: Children aged 5 to 11 years with uncontrolled asthma were enrolled. The change over 6 months in the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System Asthma Impact Scale score in children and Satisfaction with Participation in Social Roles score in caregivers were the primary outcomes. The secondary outcomes included guideline-recommended ED discharge care and self-management.
Results: Recruitment was significantly lower than expected (373 vs 640 expected). Of the 373 children (64% Black and 31% Latino children), only 63% completed the 6-month follow-up visit. In multivariable analyses that accounted for missing data, the adjusted odds ratios and 98% CIs for differences in Asthma Impact Scores or caregivers' Satisfaction with Participation in Social Roles scores were not significant. However, guideline-recommended ED discharge care was significantly improved in the intervention groups versus in the UC group, and self-management behaviors were significantly improved in the ED-plus-home group versus in the ED-only and UC groups.
Conclusions: The ED-based interventions did not significantly improve the primary clinical outcomes, although the study was likely underpowered. Although guideline-recommended ED discharge care and self-management did improve, their effect on clinical outcomes needs further study.
Keywords: Pragmatic clinical trial; asthma; community health worker; emergency department.