Interdisciplinary Care in Heart Failure
Heart failure (HF) management aims at preventing disease progression, prolonging survival, and improving the quality of life of affected patients. In daily practice, the health-care provider is faced with the complexity of managing HF in older, sometimes cognitively and psychologically affected patients who often suffer from several medical conditions requiring multiple medications and lifestyle changes. According to guidelines, the therapeutic approach to HF in the elderly should not differ significantly from that in younger patients. However, therapy should be offered more cautiously. Most patients with HF need a complex therapeutic regimen that consists of medication, diet and fluid restriction, as well as advice on activity and rest. The impaired cognitive function, depression, and other psychosocial problems are explained. The complexity of diagnosis and treatment of HF and the co-morbidity are also explored. Models to deliver interprofessional care include HF outpatient clinic, home-based management programs, a combination of models and integrated care programs, and home telemonitoring. Roles of cardiologists, HF nurses, general practitioners, dieticians, physical therapists, pharmacists, psychologists or other related professionals and other professionals involved in HF management are then covered.
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