Alignment of Doctors’ Understanding of Treatment Burden Priorities and Chronic Heart Failure Patients’ Experiences: A Nominal Group Technique Consultation

Magnolia Cardona, Adem Sav, Zoe A. Michaleff, Sarah T. Thomas, Claudia Caroline Dobler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Purpose
To identify and rank areas of treatment burden in chronic heart failure (CHF), including solutions, that should be discussed during the clinical encounter from a patient, and doctors’ perspective.

Patients and Methods
Patients with CHF and clinicians managing heart failure were invited. Nominal group technique sessions held either face to face or online in 2021–2022, with individual identification of priorities and voting on ranking.

Results
Four patient groups (N=22) and one doctor group (N=5) were held. For patients with heart failure, in descending order of priority Doctor-patient communication, Inefficiencies of the healthcare system, Healthcare access issues, Cost implications of treatment, Psychosocial impacts on patients and their families, and Impact of treatment work were the most important treatment burdens. Priorities independently identified by the doctors aligned with the patients’ but ranking differed. Patient solutions ranged from involvement of nurses or pharmacists to enhance understanding of discharge planning, through to linkage between health information systems, and maintaining strong family or social support networks. Doctors’ solutions covered timing medicines with activities of daily living, patient education on the importance of compliance, medication reviews to overcome clinical inertia, and routine clinical audits.

Conclusion
The top treatment burden priorities for CHF patients were related to interaction with clinicians and health system inefficiencies, whereas doctors were generally aware of patients’ treatment burden but tended to focus on the complexity of the direct treatment work. Addressing the priority issues identified here can commence with clinicians becoming aware of the issues that matter to patients and proactively discussing feasible immediate and longer-term solutions during clinical encounters.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)153—165
JournalPatient Preference and Adherence
Volume17
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 19 Jan 2023

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