The Optimize Heart Failure Care Program: Personalized, patient-centered management of heart failure
The Optimize HF care program, which has been implemented in 44 countries, is designed to improve outcomes through inexpensive initiatives to improve prescription of appropriate drug therapies, patient education and engagement, and improved coordination of care.
Since the launch of the Optimize HF care program in 2013, guidelines for the management of heart failure have evolved considerably. New pharmacological treatments have been introduced, and more emphasis is now placed on rapid initiation of all guideline-recommended treatments than on sequential uptitration of each drug class. Personalized heart failure care, adjusting guideline-directed medical therapy to the patient’s profile, is recommended. The importance of patient engagement and shared decision making is increasingly recognized. Finally, the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting decrease in heart failure hospitalizations have highlighted the need for a new ‘blended’ model of care which replaces many outpatient appointments with virtual consultations and telemonitoring while retaining the option of rapid hospitalization for patients with worsening signs and symptoms.
In addition to selected examples of recent guidelines and protocols, the program provides cardiologists and other healthcare professionals with an updated follow-up checklist aimed at ensuring appropriate coordination of care as well as timely reassessment and optimization of medical therapy. Another tool provides tips for virtual consultations. Healthcare providers need to understand patients’ expectations, their experiences with symptoms and treatment, and their need for knowledge, skills and support. “My HF Diary” and “Living with Heart Failure” aim to improve patient understanding of the disease and encourage involvement in care and treatment adherence. Patient information tools also include explanations on the NYHA classification, information on warning symptoms, and call preparation tips.