Better Health, Together: Chronic Heart Failure

In this month’s Better Health, Together video, WA Primary Health Alliance CEO, Learne Durrington sits down with Dr Norman Swan from the ABC Health Report to talk about our increasing focus on improving care for people living with chronic heart failure.

We are exploring opportunities for collaborative action on chronic heart failure, which is most commonly due to underlying coronary heart disease and prior myocardial infarction, hypertension and diabetes.

  • This recognises:
    • the significant burden of disease chronic heart failure represents in the Western Australian community, which is even more significant in country areas and among the Aboriginal community.
    • The opportunity to shift the focus of care more towards management of patients with chronic heart failure in primary care, with appropriate support from the acute and community care sectors
    • The evidence of unmet need in specific communities across Western Australia, as indicated by our Needs Assessment
    • The strength of the evidence-base for primary care involvement in the multidisciplinary care of patients with chronic heart failure
    • The opportunity to shape a collaboration with State health services and partners, including the National Heart Foundation and School of Public Health at Curtin University, to translate evidence into practice for the benefit of this important patient cohort.

Our approach aligns with the WA Government’s Sustainable Health Review which aims to decrease potentially preventable hospitalisations by strengthening the role of primary care in prevention, early intervention and ongoing management of these patients in the primary care setting.

A multi-partner program of activity, involving WA Primary Health Alliance taking a lead role in facilitation and co-ordination action for the primary care component, sits well within the Australian Government’s PHN Program Performance and Quality Framework.

Our areas of focus will be: facilitating a multidisciplinary heart failure team, trialling models to strengthen integrated care for chronic heart failure, with a focus on Aboriginal country residents, and developing workforce capacity to be effective partners in the multidisciplinary model of care.