Whalen E, Ely E, Brown A.
Pediatr Pulmonol. 2020 Apr 6. doi: 10.1002/ppul.24761. [Epub ahead of print] Review.
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The multidisciplinary team in a pediatric pulmonary hypertension (PH) center can improve the delivery of care to the PH patient by helping them address the different challenges that correlate to a PH diagnosis. Currently, there are a limited number of accredited pediatric PH centers nationwide, and many healthcare facilities have little experience managing patients with this complex and rare disease. Patients with PH may see providers from multiple medical specialties, inherit a high-cost burden from their PH medications, and have little community backing due to unfamiliarity of the disease. The multidisciplinary team can embrace these challenges. Through the delineation of tasks and roles within the composition of the team, patients can experience the support, resources, and care they need. The composition of the team can vary from center to center, but it may include an attending physician, advanced practice provider, nurse, dietitian, physiologists, respiratory therapists, social workers, research coordinators, and subspecialty collaboration including cardiology, pulmonology, genetics, psychology, and palliative care. When composing a multidisciplinary team, consider the heterogeneity of the patient population being served. Look at the resources available and overall community familiarity with PH. It is important to know the center’s limits and refer to an expert PH center as necessary. The goal for every patient with pulmonary hypertension is to maximize their quality of life and outcomes, and the use of the multidisciplinary team is one approach to reaching this goal.