Patient-Centered Medical Home Care for Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation: A Randomized Phase 2 Study

  • End date
    Apr 24, 2025
  • participants needed
  • sponsor
    Duke University
Updated on 24 October 2022
graft versus host disease
cell transplantation


Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HCT) has the potential to cure a variety of malignant and non-malignant diseases. However, it is associated with significant morbidity, and treatment-related mortality. This is due in large part to the prolonged pancytopenia and immunosuppression associated with the preparatory regimen of chemotherapy and/or radiation and the wait until engraftment of the transplanted hematopoietic stem cells. During this vulnerable period, infectious complications are common. Historically HCT patients were kept in protected environments to safeguard their health during the pancytopenic phase; despite these measures, infectious complications and graft versus host disease (GVHD) remained common and lead to significant morbidity and mortality after HCT. Currently patients are still closely watched in the inpatient or day hospital environment, though recent practices allow patients more freedom. This study randomizes eligible patients to receive post-transplant care at home vs. in the hospital or clinic, per standard of care. The primary objective is to compare the incidence of grade II-IV acute GVHD at 6 months in patients receiving patient-centered medical home (PCMH) vs standard care.


The patient-centered medical home (PCMH) is an exciting strategy that has the potential to revolutionize hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HCT). Traditionally, home care has been used for palliative care in end-stage cancer patients and in geriatrics. More recently the PCMH has gained increasing adoption for both primary care and care of medically complex patients. The core of the PCMH lies in the interaction between the healthcare team, the patient's family and support, and above all, the patient. These interactions can be enhanced through health information technologies such as the electronic health record (EHR) and videoconferencing via iPads. In addition, collection of patient reported outcomes (PRO) will allow feedback and adjustments.

This integration is especially important when considering the multiple complicated needs of the HCT patient: navigating a Byzantine healthcare system that often requires input and coordination from multiple specialists including transplanters, hematologists, infectious disease physicians, gastroenterologists, psychiatrists, nutritionists, pharmacists, social workers, financial coordinators, etc.; managing medication regimens to prevent infections, GVHD, and other complications (not to mention avoiding drug and food interactions); adjusting to multiple side effects including fatigue, weakness, anorexia, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, rashes, pain, anxiety, stress, organ failure, etc.; the sheer amount of time required for healthcare visits, lab draws, waiting for results, infusions, transfusions, etc.; physical and psychosocial struggles of living with a life-threatening disease; and the burdens of a treatment that often seems as debilitating as the disease. The PCMH provides patient-centered, comprehensive, accessible, and coordinated care and a systems-based approach to quality and safety: these attributes are essential to the successful care of the complicated HCT patient. this approach has the potential to lower overall costs while preserving or increasing the quality of care.

Condition Blood Disorders
Treatment Standard Care, Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH)
Clinical Study IdentifierNCT02218151
SponsorDuke University
Last Modified on24 October 2022


Yes No Not Sure

Inclusion Criteria

Scheduled to undergo a hematopoietic stem cell transplant for any cancer or non-cancer illness
Age 18-80 years of age
Karnofsky Performance Scale (KPS)> 80
A home that is deemed, upon inspection, in suitable condition to serve as a medical home, within a 90-minute driving distance of Duke

Exclusion Criteria

Lack of a caregiver
Pregnant women
Patients with a documented active infection prior to starting their preparative regimen. This includes grade 3 or higher viral, bacterial, or fungal infection
Use of homeopathic medications or probiotics that may impact gut microbiota
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