Implementation of an educational intervention to optimize self-management and transition readiness in young adults with sickle cell disease

Cecelia L. Calhoun, Regina A. Abel, Hai Ahn Pham, Shomari Thompson, Allison A. King

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Background: The transition from the pediatric setting to adult care is a well-described period of morbidity and mortality for persons with sickle cell disease (SCD). We sought to measure the feasibility and effectiveness of providing skill-based educational handouts on improving self-management and transition readiness in adolescents with SCD. Methods: This was a single-center study in which participants completed a self-assessment, the Adolescent Autonomy Checklist (AAC), to assess transition readiness and self-management skills at baseline. After results were reviewed by the study coordinator, participants were provided with skill-based handouts on noted areas of deficit. The AAC was subsequently completed at a follow-up visit. All data were stored electronically and transferred into SAS for statistical analyses. Results: Sixty-one patients completed the AAC at baseline and postintervention. At baseline, patients reported needing the most help with skills in money management, living arrangements, vocational skills, and emergency and healthcare skills. Postintervention, statistically significant improvements (P < 0.05) occurred in skills related to laundry, housekeeping, healthcare, and sexual development. A regression model exploring the time to follow-up showed that most improvements could not be attributed to maturation alone. Conclusion: This study showed that educational handouts are a readily implementable and well-accepted intervention among adolescents with SCD who identify challenges with skills necessary to successfully transition to adult care. Distinguishing which transition needs are best improved with this type of intervention will help to strengthen the multidisciplinary approach necessary to support adolescents and young adults with SCD as they matriculate to adult care.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere27722
JournalPediatric Blood and Cancer
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2019


  • education
  • sickle cell disease
  • transition
  • young adult


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