Strengthening Cardiovascular Disease Prevention in Remote Indigenous Communities in Australia's Northern Territory

Christopher Burgess, Gary Sinclair, Mark Ramjan, Patrick Coffey, Christine Connors, Leonie Katekar

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    13 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Background: In 2012 the Northern Territory Department of Health commenced the Chronic Conditions Management Model - strengthening cardiovascular disease prevention in remote Indigenous communities. Interventions included providing regular functional reporting and decision support to frontline primary health care teams. Methods: Longitudinal (three monthly) clinical audits of cardiac prevention services were undertaken between 2012 and 2014. Our primary outcome was population coverage of cardiovascular risk assessment for Indigenous clients aged 20 years and older. Secondary outcomes for those identified at high risk were (i) assessment of modifiable cardiac risk factors, (ii) prescription of risk lowering medications, and (iii) the proportion of high risk clients achieving clinical targets for risk reduction. Results: As of August 2014, 7266 clients have had their cardiovascular risk assessed, improving population coverage from 23% in mid June 2012 to 58.5%. For 2586 high risk clients, 1728 (67%) and 1416 (55%) were prescribed blood pressure and lipid lowering therapy and for those clinically re-assessed, 1366 (57%) and 989 (40%) were achieving clinical targets for risk reduction for blood pressure and lipids respectively. Conclusions: Functional reporting and decision support was associated with improvement in cardiovascular risk assessment coverage and a sustained proportion of high risk clients achieving clinical targets for cardiovascular risk reduction. Further intervention-based research is required to close the gap between identification of risk and risk reduction.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)450-457
    Number of pages8
    JournalHeart, Lung and Circulation
    Volume24
    Issue number5
    DOIs
    Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2015

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