Government and Regulations

Guidelines Drive Optimal Care for Heart Failure Patients


Cardiologists aren’t shy about repeating it: guidelines, guidelines, guidelines. That is, follow them.

“Evidence-based, guideline-driven optimal care for heart failure truly is beneficial,” Dr. Yancy says. “Every effort should be made to strive to achieve ideal thresholds and meeting best practices.”

There is now compelling evidence that, for patients with heart failure, the higher the degree of adherence to Class I-recommended therapies, the greater the reduction in 24-month mortality risk.5

“It would seem as if practicing best quality is almost a perfunctory statement, but consistently, when we look at surveys of quality improvement and adherence to evidence-based strategies, persistent gaps remain in the broader community,” Dr. Yancy says. “We know what we need to do. We’re still striving to get closer and closer to optimal care.”

Dr. Harold says the guidelines are there to make things simpler. So take advantage of them.

“If anything, hospitalists tend to be ahead of most other groups in terms of knowing evidence-based pathways and really tracking very specific protocols,” he says. “I think one of the advantages of hospitalist care is very often, it is guideline-driven. You have less variation in terms of care and quality outcomes.”

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