Chapter

The challenge of patients with heart failure (HF): barriers to accessing supportive and palliative care

Miriam Johnson, Karen Hogg, James Beattie and Max Watson

in Heart Failure

Published on behalf of Oxford University Press

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780199299300
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191740787 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/med/9780199299300.003.0011

Series: Oxford Specialist Handbooks

The challenge of patients with heart failure (HF): barriers to accessing supportive and palliative care

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Heart failure is a major public health problem, which is escalating due to the ageing population, improved survival from acute cardiac events and the beneficial impact of secondary prevention. Despite advanced heart failure therapies, with increased options and complexity, the symptom burden and mortality for patients remains high. Access to palliative care for these patients is not part of routine practise and so unmet needs for this patient cohort exist. Barriers, that until recently have made the consideration of palliative care for patients with advanced heart failure an unattractive option, remain in many areas resulting in “prognostic paralysis”. This chapter explores these barriers, and their effects. It also demonstrates the importance of overcoming these challenges in order to provide palliative care services for appropriate patients with advanced heart failure who are persistently symptomatic and how this has now become a public health priority.

Chapter.  2312 words. 

Subjects: Palliative Medicine ; Cardiovascular Medicine

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