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Dedicated Lupus Clinics Offer Better Care Quality

Arthritis Care Res; ePub 2018 Apr 2; Arora, et al

Patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) seen in dedicated lupus clinics (LC) had better quality measure (QM) performance than in general rheumatology clinics (GRC), according to a recent cross-sectional, single center study. Researchers also found indicators that suggested rheumatologists with higher SLE patient volume provide better quality of care. 150 consenting, consecutive SLE patients receiving longitudinal care at a university-based GRC (n=73) and subspecialty LC (n=77) were recruited. An updated QM survey and retrospective medical chart review was used for evaluation of each QM. The overall and individual (n=20) QM performance was calculated and compared between the 2 groups. They found:

  • Overall QM performance was significantly greater among LC SLE patients (85.8% vs. 70.2%).
  • Differences noted among the 2 groups were in sunscreen counseling (98.7% vs 83.6%), antiphospholipid antibody testing (71.4% vs 37%), pneumococcal vaccination (84.8% vs 48.8%), BMD testing (94.2% vs 54.5%), drug counseling (92.2% vs 80.8%), steroid sparing agent and ACE inhibitor use (100% vs 82%, and 94.4% vs 58.3%, respectively), and cardiovascular disease risk assessment (40.3% vs 15.1%).


Arora S, Nika A, Trupin L, et al. Does SLE care provided in a lupus clinic result in higher quality of care than general rheumatology clinic? [Published online ahead of print April 2, 2018]. Arthritis Care Res. doi:10.1002/acr.23569.