for people ages 13 years and up (full criteria)
at San Francisco, California and other locations
study started
completion around
Principal Investigator
by Sabina Ali, MDSofia Verstraete, MD
Headshot of Sabina Ali
Sabina Ali
Headshot of Sofia Verstraete
Sofia Verstraete



The goal of this clinical trial is to learn whether IBD patients have better disease outcomes and feel more empowered to manage their condition if they have access to text messaging with their clinical team and if their symptoms are more regularly monitored through text-based surveys.

Researchers will compare participants who have access to text-based monitoring, communication and education to participants who have access to text-based education alone. Researchers will also examine if different social and other non-medical factors impact IBD symptoms and quality of life.

All participants will:

  • complete 5 brief on-line surveys over 12 months about their IBD and social risk factors,
  • receive IBD education content by text message up to 2 times a week.

Some participants will also:

  • receive additional surveys by text to monitor their IBD progression,
  • have the opportunity to directly text message their IBD medical team.

Official Title

Improving Outcomes and Reducing Disparities for Patients With Inflammatory Bowel Disease Through Epidemiology and Enhanced Disease Management (PROMOTE IBD)


Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC), collectively referred to as inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD), are chronic diseases with no cure. Patient activation, defined as having the knowledge, skill, and confidence to manage one's health, can improve outcomes in chronic diseases, including IBD. Tailored digital health interventions can facilitate proactive longitudinal care for IBD patients by improving patient activation, promoting self-management and remote monitoring and can be automated and implemented at scale.

The researchers are conducting a multi-center, open-label, randomized clinical trial to evaluate the effectiveness of a tailored digital health intervention versus usual care to improve disease management and patient activation among teenage and adult patients with IBD. The researchers hypothesize the intervention will lead to higher patient activation, improved outcomes and quality of life and reduced health disparities among children and adults with IBD. Within the usual care arm, researchers will measure Social Determinants of Health at enrollment and evaluate associations between these factors and time spent in remission over a 1-year follow-up period.

Participants in both arms will complete electronic surveys at baseline and then quarterly thereafter for 12-months. The baseline survey will include: 1) basic demographic information, 2) social risk assessment (adapted from the Health-related Social Needs Screening Tool by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) survey, this measure will be completed by the parent/guardian for pediatric participants), 3) patient reported outcomes for ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease (PRO-2-UC or PRO-2-CD), 4) IBD-related quality of life (Short Inflammatory Bowel Disease Questionnaire (SIBDQ)), 5) IBD-related healthcare utilization, 6) IBD-related medication adherence and 7) patient activation measure (PAM Survey). All of these except demographic questions will be repeated at 12 months. Quarterly surveys at 3, 6, and 9 months will only include questions on IBD patient-reported outcomes and unplanned healthcare utilization (~8 questions) with the addition of medication adherence questions and the PAM at 6-months (12 additional questions).

In addition to these patient-reported data, providers and research coordinator at each site will perform chart abstraction to identify specific clinical disease-level factors (including disease severity and phenotype) and treatment-level factors (prior and current therapies).

Participants in both arms will receive texts approximately twice a week containing curated educational content. All participants will receive usual clinical care per discretion of their treating provider and will maintain usual healthcare interactions with the clinical team using their preferred method of interaction including phone or electronic communications within their Electronic Health Record (EHR).

Participants assigned to the intervention arm will receive enhanced electronic health care delivered through text messaging. This includes short monthly check in surveys to assess IBD disease progression. Survey cadence will increase to weekly for 4 weeks at a time if a participant reports severe symptoms. This also includes the opportunity to communicate with their clinical team through text messaging.

Among participants assigned to the usual care arm of the pragmatic trial, a cohort analysis will evaluate associations between social risk and IBD natural history and outcomes.


Inflammatory Bowel Diseases, Crohn Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, Colitis, Text Messaging, Symptom Monitoring, Social Risk Factors, Intestinal Diseases, Enhanced Digital Care, Education


You can join if…

Open to people ages 13 years and up

  • 13+ years old with IBD (Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, indeterminant colitis).
  • Followed at a participating site with an office visit (in-person or virtual) within the preceding 12 months.
  • Have access to a mobile phone and willing and able to receive and respond to text messages.
  • Willing to answer questions on electronic surveys.
  • Have the ability to read text messages and answer surveys in English or Spanish.

You CAN'T join if...

  • IBD patients s/p surgery with a current pouch or ostomy.
  • Unable to provide informed consent and child assent for minors.


  • UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital
    San Francisco California 94158 United States
  • University of California San Diego
    San Diego California 92093 United States

Lead Scientists at UCSF

  • Sabina Ali, MD
    Professor, Pediatrics, School of Medicine. Authored (or co-authored) 25 research publications. Research interests: Inflammatory Bowel disease · Nutrition · Quality Improvement · liver disease
  • Sofia Verstraete, MD
    Associate Professor, Pediatrics, School of Medicine. Authored (or co-authored) 28 research publications


not yet accepting patients
Start Date
Completion Date
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Study Type
Expecting 900 study participants
Last Updated