April 20, 2016
Jo Ellen Rodgers, Pharm.D., associate professor at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy and Carla A. Sueta, M.D., Ph.D., professor in the Division of Cardiology at UNC School of Medicine, have recently completed a fourth edition of their heart failure guide for patients, Learning to Live with Heart Failure.
The book provides information and advice to patients with heart failure. For the first time, a Spanish-language version of the heart failure guide will also be made available. It includes contributions from UNC Health Care providers at UNC Medical Center and UNC Rex Healthcare, as well as the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy.
“This has been a multidisciplinary achievement, and I am excited that that this version be available to all of our affiliated hospitals and clinics,” Sueta said. The book includes multidisciplinary input from nurses, dieticians and other pharmacists.
Rodgers and Sueta developed the original version of the heart failure guide seven years ago. They held several patient focus groups to learn which sections needed to be further expanded or simplified.
“We currently use the book in both the inpatient and outpatient settings,” Rodgers said. “We commonly give it to patients admitted to the hospital and recommend that they bring it with them to every clinic visit. There is simply too much information to cover in one sitting, and it is good to review some topics multiple times.”
The heart failure guide originally focused primarily on explaining the disease itself, dietary recommendations, drug therapy and the importance of self-monitoring.
“We have updated this book at various points to expand the content to include information about advanced heart failure therapies including heart transplant and left ventricular assist devices as well as advanced directives and comfort care,” Rodgers said. “We have also updated the book as new drug therapies have become FDA approved for heart failure.”
Rodgers’s primary research interest is in the care of heart failure patients, and she is a member of the Guideline Committee of the Heart Failure Society of America.
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