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Defining Minimum Necessary Anticoagulation-Related Communication at Discharge: Consensus of the Care Transitions Task Force of the New York State Anticoagulation Coalition

      Background

      Anticoagulated patients are particularly vulnerable to ADEs when they experience changes in medical acuity, pharmacotherapy, or care setting, and resources guiding care transitions are lacking. The New York State Anticoagulation Coalition convened a task force to develop a consensus list of requisite data elements (RDEs) that should accompany all anticoagulated patients undergoing care transitions.

      Methods

      A multidisciplinary panel of 15 anticoagulation experts voluntarily completed an iterative Delphi process. Resources were disseminated and deliberated via remote technology, with consensus achieved via blinded electronic polling.

      Results

      The panel reached consensus on a list of 15 RDEs for anticoagulation communication at discharge (the ACDC List). Consensus was rapidly achieved by the full panel on 13 elements, while 3 (2 of which were combined into 1 element) required multiple iterations and achieved consensus with votes from 8 available panelists. The elements encompassed a range of factors, including drug use and indications, previous exposure and duration of therapy, recent drug exposure and laboratory results and expectations for subsequent administration, therapy goals, patient education and comprehension, and expectations for clinical management. Twelve of the elements are applicable to any anticoagulant, and 3 are specific to warfarin.

      Conclusion

      The ACDC List identifies specific pieces of clinical information that a panel of anticoagulant experts agree should be communicated to downstream providers for all anticoagulated patients undergoing care transitions. Additional study is needed to objectively evaluate the ability of existing care systems to communicate the elements and to assess possible relationships between communication of the elements and clinical outcomes.
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