BACKGROUND: Optimal care of patients with inherited bleeding disorders requires that bleeding episodes are treated early, or still better prevented, through extension of patient care beyond hospital-based treatment to home-based therapy. In South Africa (SA), adoption of home therapy is variable, in part owing to lack of consensus among healthcare providers on what constitutes home therapy, which patients should be candidates for it, how it should be monitored, and what the barriers to home therapy are.
OBJECTIVES: To conduct a modified Delphi process in order to establish consensus on home therapy among haemophilia healthcare providers in SA.
METHODS: Treaters experienced in haemophilia care were invited to participate in a consensus-seeking process conducted in three rounds. In round 1, provisional statements around home therapy were formulated as questions and collated in a structured list. In rounds 2 and 3, evolving versions of the questionnaire were administered to participants. Consensus was defined as ≥70% agreement among the participants.
RESULTS: The panel composition included an equal number of physicians and non-physicians. The participation rate was 100% through all three consensus rounds. The group reached consensus for 92% of the statements. Consensus of 100% was reached on starting home therapy in paediatric patients, requiring all patients on home therapy to sign informed consent and indemnity, and providing round-the-clock support for patients on home therapy.
CONCLUSIONS: The home therapy consensus statements in this report have the potential to translate to policy on home therapy and to guide the initiation, practice and evaluation of home therapy programmes in SA.