The Models of Care in Arthritis (MOCA), bone and joint disease research initiative is an interdisciplinary research program dedicated to improving the care for people with these conditions by developing innovative ways to ensure people get the right care, by the right provider, at the right time. Our team consists of epidemiologists, health services and health policy researchers representing primary and specialist care, rehabilitation, relevant decision-makers and stakeholder partners.
A model of care defines the way in which health care is delivered, with an ultimate goal to address the needs of people across the course of their illness, through services provided by a variety of health professionals, including family doctors, specialists, nurses, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, social workers, psychologists, chiropractors, and vocational counselors. In MOCA, we focus specifically on the care for people with arthritis, bone and joint conditions. Health services can be provided in different settings, including the community, acute care hospitals, inpatient rehabilitation facilities, and the home, through face-to-face contacts or the use of communication technology (e.g., telehealth).
Our aim, in keeping with The Summit on the Standards of Prevention and Care in Arthritis 2005, is to improve access to appropriate care with the intent of improving education, ongoing activity and participation in social, leisure, education, community and work activities for people with arthritis, bone and joint diseases.
The goal of this research is to develop a toolkit that can be used by health professionals, policy makers and planners in deciding the best type of model of care and the resources required to improve access to care for people with arthritis and other chronic musculoskeletal diseases.
In order to develop this toolkit, we need to understand:
- The Need: the service gaps based on how many people have arthritis, bone and joint problems in given geographical locations (urban, rural, remote) now and in the future.
- The Supply: the available health care providers in different geographical locations.
- The Current Practice: the current models of arthritis care including why they were developed, their characteristics, and facilitators and barriers to their implementation.
We will combine these data through a consensus process that involves people with arthritis, health care providers, stakeholder organizations, health policy makers and planners to develop a framework and toolkit for determining the most appropriate model of care in different locations (e.g., urban, rural and remote regions) and settings (e.g., hospital, community).
This research will be conducted primarily in British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario as this will allow us to compare and contrast similarities and differences in the provinces.