Clinical Dialogue: A Call to Action: The Role of the PA in Improving Outcomes for Patients with Heart Failure

Heart failure (HF) exacts a significant toll on affected individuals, placing them at risk of morbidity, diminished functional abilities, lesser quality of life, and mortality. More than 5.8 million Americans have HF, with over 550,000 diagnosed each year. The prevalence of HF is expected to continue to increase as the U.S. population ages, underscoring the need for PAs to stay abreast of current treatments, the respective roles of these therapies in HF management as specified in evidence-based guidelines, and the management of comorbidities. As newer therapies have become available, it is particularly important that PAs be knowledgeable about these treatments and the latest recommendations concerning their use. Despite progress in HF management, deficiencies remain, as reflected in persistently high rates of readmission. Given all these considerations, it is imperative that PAs be prepared to meet the challenges of HF treatment.

Learning Objectives
At the conclusion of this activity, the PA should be better able to:
  • Recognize key diagnostic features of HF and use appropriate diagnostic tests to diagnose chronic HF early in the disease course.
  • Outline the most up-to-date evidence-based guidelines for the management of chronic HF, including the use of newer pharmacotherapies.
  • Use appropriate management strategies when addressing T2DM in patients with chronic heart failure.