More than 870,000 new cases of Congestive Heart Failure (CHF) are diagnosed each year. Although CHF affects people of all ages, it is the leading cause of readmissions in adults over the age of 65. Sixty-one percent of heart failure readmissions occur within the first 15 days, and in the long-term care setting, 27-43% of readmission rates are caused by heart failure alone.
With no identified cure for CHF, evidence-based practice must be used to manage the condition. To help reduce readmissions for congestive heart failure:
- Ensure appropriate discharge planning
- Create an individualized, patient-centered care plan
- Properly reconcile patient medication
- Provide adequate patient and caregiver education
- Promote strong clinical competency regarding disease management
- Schedule physician follow-up appointments or ancillary referrals
Post-acute care providers should also focus on symptom relief to reduce rehospitalization for heart failure, and thus improve overall patient outcomes.
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute: https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/hf/causes
Prevention ProductsLog In to View Complete Formulary
To reduce the likelihood of CHF readmissions, screen symptomatic patients with common co-conditions, provide adequate patient and caregiver education, and ensure patients adhere to fluid restrictions of 1.5-2 L.
Diagnosis ProductsLog In to View Complete Formulary
Diagnosing a CHF exacerbation is generally focused on fluid retention. If CHF symptoms are present, perform diagnostic testing, including a complete physical assessment, medication review, labs, and cardiovascular testing.
Treatment ProductsLog In to View Complete Formulary
CHF can be treated in place according to physician orders. Consider increasing dosage of diuretics, other cardiac medications to improve use and effectiveness, and the use of a portable chest x-ray.