Good day, everyone. Here is your heart news round up for this weekend.
CVD socioeconomic watch
Socioeconomic gap in BP management closed
Time was when management of hypertension was distinctly different between lower income and more affluent areas in the UK. It seems that with “the introduction of quality-of -care measures in general practices,” this socioeconomic gap has been successfully bridged and closed. This was partly achieved by “the so-called quality and outcomes framework (QOF), a pay-for-performance system” which give financial incentives to primary health care providers who reach certain outcome targets. The proportion of patients with up-to-date BP monitoring was 1.7% more in the higher income communities in 2005 but this advantage narrowed down to 0.2% in 2007.
CVD patient watch
British Teen Refuses Heart Transplant
“I’ll take my chances,” says 13-year old Hannah Jones after refusing a heart transplant. The British teen has been undergoing chemotherapy and other treatments against leukaemia since she was 4, which also damaged her heart in the process. It seems that Hannah has had enough of hospitals and would rather stay at home with her parents than undergo the rigorous process of heart transplantation.
CVD ethnicity watch
Differences in the incidence of congestive heart failure by ethnicity
Results from analysis of data from the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) show that the risk for congestive heart failure is much higher among African Americans compared to other ethnic groups. The increased risk is related to prevalence of hypertension, diabetes mellitus, as well as socioeconomic status.
CVD gender watch
Gender matching aids long-term survival after heart transplants
Male and female hearts do differ and when it comes to heart transplants, gender matching is important. Except for size, heart differences are not so evident, yet survival rates in sexually matched transplantation are much higher. However, it boils down to a trade off between longer waiting time and sexual matching for organs.
CVD depression watch
Heart disease patients may not benefit from depression screening
Clinical guidelines by American Heart Association (AHA) and the American Psychiatric Association a few weeks ago recommended screening for depression among cardiac patients as reported in a previous post. This study, however, casts doubts on the necessity of the recommendation. According to Dr. James Coyne of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, “there is no clear evidence that depression screening plays a conclusive role in improving cardiovascular patients’ health.”
CVD healthcare watch
New survey: More than half of US chronically ill adults skip needed care due to costs
The Commonwealth Fund surveyed 7500 chronically ill adults in eight industrialized countries (Australia, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, UK, and the US) with at least one of the following conditions: hypertension, heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, lung problems, cancer, or depression. The survey results
“finds that those in the U.S. are by far the most likely to forgo care because of the cost, as well as the most likely to experience medical errors, care coordination problems, and high out-of-pocket costs.”
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