SALT LAKE CITY – Researchers at Intermountain Healthcare have developed a clinical decision support app that more quickly identifies when heart failure becomes advanced and a patient’s care needs have changed. “We found that clinical decision support can facilitate the early identification of patients needing advanced heart failure therapy and that its use was associated with significantly more patients visiting specialized heart facilities and longer survival,” said R. Scot Evans, lead author of a study on the app that was published in the Journal of Cardiac Failure recently. Using the app during the study, researchers found that it led to significantly improved detection of disease advancements and more intervention patients were alive after 30, 90 and 180 days compared to a control group. “The sooner advanced heart failure is diagnosed and patients begin to receive advanced, specialized treatment, the better they tend to do,” wrote Evans. When computer monitoring indicates a patient likely has advanced heart failure, the app automatically sends a secure email to the patient’s doctors, and includes the recommended therapy and all the relevant information that triggered the alert. It also provides a link to a secure Intermountain web-based page that provides further information, and lists phone numbers and links so doctors can easily connect the patients with advanced heart failure specialists.
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