Assessment of Drug Therapy-Related Issues in an Outpatient Heart Failure Population and the Potential Impact of Pharmacist-Driven Intervention

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Abstract

Background:

The Ambulatory Cardiac Triage, Intervention, and Education (ACTIVE) infusion unit is an outpatient center that aims to provide heart failure (HF) patients with comprehensive multidisciplinary interventions.

Objective:

To describe the patient population served in ACTIVE and to document the prevalence of comorbidities and drug therapy-related issues (DRIs) in order to define the most effective role of a pharmacist in the unit.

Methods:

Patients who have been interviewed by a pharmacist in ACTIVE were included. Comprehensive medical and medication profile reviews were performed. Patient comorbidities were documented, and DRIs were classified.

Results:

Sixty patients were included. Most prevalent cardiac comorbidities included hypertension (73%) and hyperlipidemia (62%). Top 3 noncardiac comorbidities included chronic kidney disease (60%), diabetes (50%), and obesity (35%). The prevalence of DRI was reported as follows: (1) needs additional/alternative therapy (untreated indication [37] or suboptimal therapeutic choice [46]), (2) wrong drug (major drug–drug interaction [90], contraindication [11], or duplicate therapy [1]), (3) suboptimal dosing (17), (4) dose exceeds recommended maximum (9), and (5) adverse drug reaction (93). In 63 (22%) of the DRIs, a pharmacist made recommendations to modify the regimen.

Conclusion:

The prevalence of DRI is high even among HF patients managed in a subspecialty cardiovascular practice. Pharmacists in this setting play a vital role in more effectively resolving DRI.

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