Objective: To provide guidance on the implementation of recommended American College of Rheumatology (ACR) rheumatoid arthritis (RA) disease activity and functional status assessment measures in telehealth settings. Methods: An expert panel was assembled from the recently convened ACR RA disease activity and functional status measures working groups to summarize strategies for implementation of ACR-recommended RA disease activity (the Clinical Disease Activity Index [CDAI], Disease Activity Score in 28 joints using the erythrocyte sedimentation rate or the C-reactive protein level [DAS28-ESR/CRP], Patient Activity Scale II [PAS-II], Simplified Disease Activity Index [SDAI], and Routine Assessment of Patient Index Data 3 [RAPID3]) and functional status (the Health Assessment Questionnaire II [HAQ-II], Multidimensional Health Assessment Questionnaire [MDHAQ], and PROMIS physical function 10-item short form [PROMIS PF-10]) measures in telehealth settings. Results: Measures composed of patient-reported items (disease activity: PAS-II, RAPID3; functional status: HAQ-II, MDHAQ, PROMIS PF-10) require minimal modification for use in telehealth settings. Measures requiring formal joint counts (the CDAI, DAS28-ESR/CRP, and SDAI) can be calculated using patient-reported swollen and tender joint counts. When the feasibility of laboratory testing is limited, the CDAI can be used in place of the SDAI, and scoring modifications of the DAS28-ESR/CRP without the acute-phase reactant are available. Assessment of the validity of these modifications is limited. Implementation of these measures can be facilitated by electronic health record collection, mobile applications, and provider/staff administration during telehealth visits. Conclusion: The ACR-recommended RA disease activity and functional status measures can be adapted for use in telehealth settings to support high-quality clinical care. Research is needed to better understand how telehealth settings may impact the validity of these measures.
ASJC Scopus subject areas