Clinicians discuss biologics, best practices to treat adult and pediatric asthma

More than 100 staff from Yale New Haven Health (YNHHS), Northeast Medical Group (NEMG), Yale Medicine (YM), and Community Medical Group (CMG) recently attended a dinner presentation, “Beyond the Clinical Practice Guidelines: Caring for the Severe Asthmatic in a New Era.”

Yale Medicine pulmonologist Lauren Cohn, MD, discussed using biologics to treat asthma. “Monoclonal antibody biologic therapies have been life-changing for patients with arthritis and inflammatory bowel diseases,” she said. “Finally, biologics are available to treat severe asthma, and more are on the way to FDA approval. They are improving the lives of our most severe patients, since they reduce asthma exacerbations and hospitalizations.”

Clinical integration workgroups coordinated by Clinical Integration and Population Health at YNHHS are helping clinicians adopt evidence-based treatments like biologics. Clinicians from the different medical groups serve on nine disease-specific workgroups, which review clinical quality metrics to identify improvement areas.

“We have brought clinicians together to study evidence on how to best diagnose and treat diseases that put a huge financial and resource burden on our society,” said NEMG pulmonologist Kevin Twohig, MD, who co-chairs the Pulmonary Workgroup with Dr. Cohn. “Through this quality journey, we hope to improve the lives of people who have placed their trust in us.”

Clinicians and health systems are increasingly accountable for delivering high- quality, well-coordinated care at reasonable costs. With overlapping patient populations, YNHH, NEMG, YM and CMG are collaborating to care for these populations using shared clinical practice guidelines.

“Clinical integration places patient needs in the center,” said Alan Kliger, MD, medical director, YNHHS Clinical Integration. “When all agree on the best- evidence approach to care, patients are the winners.”

Clinicians find the clinical integration dinners useful for a variety of reasons, he said. “They provide a venue where clinicians can learn about the rationale for best-evidence clinical practice guidelines, hear about other clinicians’ challenges and share experiences.”

Clinical Practice Guidelines are available under Epic “Tools,” on the Physician Portal or from pophealthci@ynhh.org.