Chronic conditions often require complex and long-lasting management which burdens healthcare systems significantly. Atrial fibrillation is a prevalent heart rhythm disorder and an example of such chronic condition. Management of atrial fibrillation focusses on four main treatment fundamentals being: (i) controlling the heart rate, (ii) controlling the heart rhythm, (iii) stroke prevention, and (iv) detecting and treating cardiovascular risk factors. The question rises whether a single healthcare professional is able to adequately address each of these fundamentals in the treatment of atrial fibrillation. To guide the answer to this question and to improve the coordination of care, the 2016 European Society of Cardiology Guidelines for the management of atrial fibrillation suggests that an integrated care approach should be considered. The approach consists of four interrelated elements: (i) patient involvement, (ii) multidisciplinary teams, (iii) use of technology tools, and (iv) providing access to all care options by delivering comprehensive care.
- Care pathways
- multidisciplinary teamwork