Background: An increasing amount of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) patients are receiving therapies given by intravenous (IV) infusion. Infusion centers administer a large range of IV therapies to a broad variety of medical conditions. An infusion center located in the IBD unit is specialized both for IBD patients and for their specific treatments. The aim of the study was to determine satisfaction of IBD patients treated in the IBD unit compared to their experience in a generalized infusion center.
Methods: A prospective longitudinal study was conducted over a 3-month period in one new specialized IBD unit infusion center at Shaare-Zedek Medical Center. 28 patients fulfilled the inclusion criteria. All participants were treated prior to inclusion in a general infusion center. They all had to reply to a questionnaire. The questions related to their general satisfaction, preference of infusion center and the reasons for this preference.
Results: 18 (64%) of patients were men, 20 (71%) had Ulcerative Colitis, and Infliximab and Vedolizumab were given evenly to 50% each. 27 (96%) patients preferred the IBD unit, when the main reasons included: Medical staff more available (68%), Medical staff is familiar with my condition (61%), and familiar location (64%). Other reasons, including shorter infusion time, professional staff, better knowledge of medical situation and medication side effects were all mentioned for this preference. 22 (79%) patients mentioned the location to be an extremely important factor. 26 (93%) of participants said that this location had a positive effect on their disease, and 25 (89%) also emphasized the specialized IBD nurse to have a great deal impact on their feeling. 16 (57%) of patients rated very positively the interaction with other patients with IBD.
Conclusions: A specialized IBD unit infusion center is highly rated by IBD patients. This model offers many advantages over the conventional generalized infusion centers