Improving CKD diagnosis and blood pressure control in primary care: a tailored multifaceted quality improvement programme

John Humphreys, Gill Harvey, Janet Hegarty

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a worldwide public health issue. From 2009 to 2014, the National Institute for Health Research Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care Greater Manchester (NIHR CLAHRC GM) in England ran 4 phased, 12-month quality improvement (QI) projects with 49 primary care practices in GM. Two measureable aims were set - halve undiagnosed CKD in participating practices using modelled estimates of prevalence; and optimise blood pressure (BP) control (<140/90 mm Hg in CKD patients without proteinuria; <130/80 mm Hg in CKD patients with proteinuria) for 75% of recorded cases of CKD. The 4 projects ran as follows: P1 = Project 1 with 19 practices (September 2009 to September 2010), P2 = Project 2 with 11 practices (March 2011 to March 2012), P3 = Project 3 with 12 practices (September 2012 to October 2013), and P4 = Project 4 with 7 practices (April 2013 to March 2014). Methods: Multifaceted intervention approaches were tailored based on a contextual analysis of practice support needs. Data were collected from practices by facilitators at baseline and again at project close, with self-reported data regularly requested from practices throughout the projects. Results: Halving undiagnosed CKD as per aim was exceeded in 3 of the 4 projects. The optimising BP aim was met in 2 projects. Total CKD cases after the programme increased by 2,347 (27%) from baseline to 10,968 in a total adult population (aged ≥18 years) of 231,568. The percentage of patients who managed to appropriate BP targets increased from 34 to 74% (P1), from 60 to 83% (P2), from 68 to 71% (P3), and from 63 to 76% (P4). In nonproteinuric CKD patients, 88, 90, 89, and 91%, respectively, achieved a target BP of <140/90 mm Hg. In proteinuric CKD patients, 69, 46, 48, and 45%, respectively, achieved a tighter target of <130/80 mm Hg. Analysis of national data over similar timeframes indicated that practices participating in the programme achieved higher CKD detection rates. Conclusions: Participating practices identified large numbers of "missing" CKD patients with comparator data showing they outperformed non-QI practices locally and nationally over similar timeframes. Improved BP control also occurred through this intervention, but overall achievement of the tighter BP target in proteinuric patients was notably less.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18-32
Number of pages15
JournalNephron EXTRA
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Blood pressure
  • CKD
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Proteinuria
  • Type 2 diabetes


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