Table 2

Gaps in care and their associated drivers evident across the journey of patients with RA-associated comorbidities

Stage of patient journeyGaps in careDrivers*
ScreeningLack of screening for comorbidity risk factorsLimited screening pathways and frameworks in place to detect comorbidities among patients with RA25
Lack of comprehensive comorbidity-specific recommendations
Limited comorbidity screening26
ReferralDelay in referralLack of HCP education on referral pathways27
Logistical and ambulatory difficulty can negatively impact outpatient attendance2 28
DiagnosisDelay in diagnosisComorbidities are often underdiagnosed and more likely to be diagnosed when severe26
Symptoms of RA/RA treatment can mask comorbidity signs and symptoms29
Treatment and management (pharmacological and non-pharmacological)Inadequate management of comorbiditiesInadequate communication across multidisciplinary team25
Limited recording of drug–drug interactions
Patients with RA who have comorbidities do not always receive the recommended comorbidity treatment25
Follow-upSuboptimal patient outcomesIssues with patient data inconsistencies in capturing and sharing across different systems29
Poor follow-up appointment attendance27
Increased morbidity and mortality is seen in patients with complex therapeutic needs27
  • *List of drivers not exhaustive.

  • HCP, healthcare professional; PCP, primary care professional; RA, rheumatoid arthritis.