Continuity of care for children with anorexia nervosa in the Netherlands: a modular perspective

Aaron Lennips*, V. J. T. Peters, B. R. Meijboom, A. C. Nissen, J. E. H. Bunt

*Corresponding author for this work

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Care provision for children with anorexia nervosa is provided by outpatient care teams in hospitals, but the way these teams are organized differs per hospital and hampers the continuity of care. The aim of this study is to explore the organization and continuity of care for children with anorexia nervosa in the Netherlands by using a modular perspective. We conducted a qualitative, exploratory case study and took the healthcare provision for children with anorexia nervosa, provided by outpatient care teams, as our case. We conducted nine interviews with healthcare professionals involved in outpatient care teams from six hospitals. A thematic analysis was used to analyze the data. The modular perspective offered insights into the work practices and working methods of outpatient care teams. We were able to identify modules (i.e. the separate consultations with the various professionals), and components (i.e. elements of these consultations). In addition, communication mechanisms (interfaces) were identified to facilitate information flow and coordination among healthcare professionals. Our modular perspective revealed gaps and overlap in outpatient care provision, consequently providing opportunities to deal with unnecessary duplications and blind spots. Conclusion: A modular perspective can be applied to explore the organization of outpatient care provision for children with anorexia nervosa. We specifically highlight gaps and overlap in healthcare provision, which in turn leads to recommendations on how to support the three essential parts of continuity of care: informational continuity, relational continuity, and management continuity. (Table presented.).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2463-2476
Number of pages14
JournalEuropean Journal of Pediatrics
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2024

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© The Author(s) 2024


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