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Population of Interest: Elderly Patients with Congestive Heart Failure (CHF)

The population of interest for this DNP project is elderly patients with congestive heart failure (CHF). CHF is defined as a condition in which the heart can no longer pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs, resulting in an accumulation of fluid in the lungs and other tissues. The prevalence of CHF increases significantly in individuals over age 65, and it has been estimated that more than 5 million Americans suffer from CHF, with approximately 550,000 new cases being diagnosed every year. Although advances have been made in medical therapies to treat CHF, mortality rates remain high. As such, there is a need to develop interventions and strategies to improve patient outcomes and reduce mortality associated with this condition.

Preliminary Needs Assessment
A preliminary needs assessment is essential for identifying any gaps between the current standard of care for elderly patients with CHF and what should be expected from optimal management. To conduct a needs assessment for this population, both quantitative and qualitative data must be collected.

Quantitative Data Collection: A review of available databases such as Medicare claims data or hospitalization records could be used to gain insight into existing patterns of healthcare utilization among elderly patients with congestive heart failure who are receiving care at various facilities throughout the country. Information pertaining to admissions rate due to decompensated symptoms related to CHF as well as readmission rates could provide a measure of current quality standards within each facility’s patient population.[1] Additionally, comparisons between different facilities or geographic regions can help identify potential disparities or areas where improvement may be needed most urgently.[2] Furthermore, examining medical record documentation on key performance indicators related to healthcare processes such as medication management compliance or completion rate of diagnostic tests could offer further insight into how these services are being provided on an individual level.[3]

Qualitative Data Collection: In addition to collecting quantitative data related to healthcare utilization patterns among elderly patients with congestive heart failure, qualitative information should also be gathered through patient interviews or surveys on their perception regarding their experience when receiving care at various healthcare facilities.[4],[5] Such insights would provide additional perspective on whether opportunities exist for enhancing overall quality of life for those living with this chronic condition by addressing aspects such as symptom management support systems; access barriers; financial considerations; communication issues between providers/patients; etc…[6], [7]. Additionally, online focus groups consisting primarily elderly participants who are currently receiving treatment for congestive heart failure could offer valuable feedback regarding experiences navigating within health care system based on personal perspectives.[8]


[1]. Nanavati et al., 2020 [2]. Uppal et al., 2017 [3]. Kalogeropoulos et al., 2016 [4]. Yang et al., 2018 [5]. Brederlow & Fitzpatrick-Lewis 2008 [6]. Sonnino & Santini 2014 [7]. Malyukova et al., 2019 8 . De Jongh et al., 2015

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