Results Summary

What was the research about?

Patient-reported outcome measures are surveys that ask patients how they feel and what activities they can do. These surveys ask about things such as how well people sleep and how much their pain interferes with daily life.

In this study, the research team wanted to learn if two clinics could gather patient-reported outcome measures during routine care visits, and if patients with type 2 diabetes could use the results to set goals for improving their health. The research team also wanted to learn if patients and clinic staff saw value in using these measures.

What were the results?

The two clinics were able to collect patient-reported outcomes measures. About 26 percent of patients who the research team asked to join the study took the survey during their first clinic visit. Of these patients, 73 percent took the survey again three months later.

Patients at the two clinics had different results for setting a health goal. At one clinic, 40 percent of patients who took the first survey set a health goal. At the other clinic, 90 percent of patients who took the first survey set a health goal.

In interviews, patients and clinic staff said that using the results of the surveys could improve communication with doctors. They also said the survey results led to changes in patients’ care and helped patients stay involved in their care. However, both patients and clinic staff said the survey questions needed more explanation. Clinic staff also wanted more training and support for collecting surveys and setting goals with patients.

Who was in the study?

The study included 1,864 patients with type 2 diabetes. Patients came from two clinics with diverse patient populations. The first clinic was in Connecticut. At that clinic, 59 percent of patients were Hispanic, 23 percent were white, and 11 percent were African American. About 71 percent of these patients were eligible for Medicare and Medicaid. The second clinic was in Oklahoma. At that clinic, 8 percent of patients were Hispanic, 61 percent were white, and 26 percent were African American. About 65 percent of these patients were able to receive Medicare and Medicaid.

What did the research team do?

Patients took a 29-question survey on paper during a clinic visit. The survey asked about their health and how illness affects their daily lives. Then patients talked about setting health goals with a clinic staff member who had reviewed their surveys. The research team looked at patients’ health records for other kinds of information. After three months, the research team asked the patients to take the survey again. At the same time, the patients talked with a clinic staff member about progress on their goals. Finally, the research team asked patients and clinic staff members if they thought the survey data were useful. A team of patient advisors gave the research team feedback throughout the study.

What were the limits of the study?

The study included patients from only two clinics. Also, each clinic made up its own ways of giving patients the survey and setting goals, which may explain differences between the clinics. Results may be different for other clinics.

Future research could test using the surveys in other clinics and locations. Also, future research could look into ways to better prepare patients and care teams for using the measures.

How can people use the results?

Clinics could try collecting patient-reported outcome measures to see if their results are useful for routine care of patients with type 2 diabetes.

Final Research Report

View this project's final research report.

Peer-Review Summary

Peer review of PCORI-funded research helps make sure the report presents complete, balanced, and useful information about the research. It also confirms that the research has followed PCORI’s Methodology Standards. During peer review, experts who were not members of the research team read a draft report of the research. These experts may include a scientist focused on the research topic, a specialist in research methods, a patient or caregiver, and a healthcare professional. Reviewers do not have conflicts of interest with the study.

The peer reviewers point out where the draft report may need revision. For example, they may suggest ways to improve how the research team analyzed its results or reported its conclusions. Learn more about PCORI’s peer-review process here.

In response to peer review, Scholle made changes including

  • Revising the Abstract, Discussion, and Conclusions to clarify that the results of the study should be considered exploratory because this was a pilot study, and the results likely are not generalizable
  • Revising the report generally to make the language clearer, and providing a clearer link between the qualitative and quantitative aspects of the study
  • Clarifying decisions made around adding and removing covariates from the analysis model
  • Providing more information about the study settings, care teams, and target population in order to provide more evidence regarding external validity of the study

Conflict of Interest Disclosures

Project Information

Sarah H. Scholle, DrPH, MPH
National Committee for Quality Assurance
Feasibility of Implementing Patient-Reported Outcome Measures

Key Dates

September 2014
February 2018

Study Registration Information


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Last updated: March 4, 2022