Chronic inflammatory skin conditions such as Atopic Dermatitis (AD) and the treatment to address them can significantly impact the quality of life of patients and their families and carers. Public stigmatisation together with the complex long-term management and the potential occurrence of comorbidities, can place a substantial social, psychological and financial burden on these individuals.
AD and wider dermatology care have been deprioritised in favour of services deemed more medically urgent – however we are glad to see that things are starting to change. Care teams and patient advocates are raising awareness of AD, and a suite of new therapies is revolutionising our field of practice. In order to maximise the benefits of these, the pathways of diagnosis, treatment and management will need to adapt. In addition, we need to achieve earlier diagnoses, so that more patients receive prompt, specialist care enabling them to self-manage their symptoms. The challenges that we face as providers of AD care require us to work together both amongst ourselves, and with other specialists, community based clinicians and patient groups. This will support us to diagnose patients more effectively, to provide clearer patient, carer and provider education, and to deliver high-quality patient care.
We welcome the release of this report, in which KPMG has documented a plethora of examples of excellence in care from thirty two centres across the world, in which dedicated care teams are tackling AD-associated challenges in varied and innovative ways. We hope these examples can inspire readers to advance their own services and ultimately improve quality of life and treatment outcomes for patients living with AD.
Professor Audrey Nosbaum (Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Lyon, Lyon, France), Professor Stephan Weidinger (University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein, Kiel, Germany), Professor Emma Guttman (Mount Sinai & Icahn School of Medicine, New York, USA), Professor Eric Simpson (Oregon Health & Science University Hospital, Oregon, USA)