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23 Implementing the support needs approach for patients (SNAP): patient experiences
  1. Carole Gardener1,
  2. Gail Ewing1 and
  3. Morag Farquhar2
  1. 1University of Cambridge
  2. 2University of East Anglia


Introduction The Support Needs Approach for Patients (SNAP) is a complex intervention designed to enable person-centred care for patients with progressive non-malignant conditions, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

SNAP consists of:

  1. the validated SNAP tool: designed for purpose, comprising 15 evidence–based questions tohelp patients consider areas where they may need more support.

  2. the SNAP approach: a needs–led conversation between the patient and healthcare professional (HCP) to express, prioritise and address unmet support needs identified through the patient–completed tool.

Understanding patients‘ experiences of the intervention is crucial.

Aim To explore patient experiences of SNAP within a pilot implementation study.

Methods SNAP-trained HCPs implemented SNAP with patients with COPD across three care settings (primary, community and secondary) in the East of England over four months (n=56). Topic-guided qualitative interviews were conducted with a purposive sample of patients (n=20) focusing on their experiences. Interview transcripts were analysed using thematic analysis.

Results SNAP helped patients recognise their unmet support needs and gave them ‘permission’ to discuss these needs with HCPs. Patients described being active participants in SNAP discussions and were positive about how identified support needs were addressed. Patients without current support needs identified SNAP’s potential future utility. Patients who reported less gains were unclear about the purpose of the SNAP tool and could not recall a SNAP conversation.

Discussion Patients with COPD described a range of benefits from SNAP. Simultaneously collected HCP data is currently being analysed to enable further understanding of why some patients reported less gains.

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