NICE quality standard on acute heart failure

Br J Cardiol 2016;23:9 Leave a comment
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The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has published a new quality standard in acute heart failure (QS103) to cover the care of adults (over 18 years) who have a diagnosis of acute heart failure or are being investigated for acute heart failure. 

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Acute heart failure is a common cause of admission to hospital with over 67,000 admissions in England and Wales a year, and is the leading cause of hospital admission in people 65 years or older in the UK. NICE expects the six quality statements will help improve outcomes from this condition.

The six quality statements are:

  • Adults presenting to hospital with new suspected acute heart failure have a single measurement of natriuretic peptide.
  • Adults admitted to hospital with new suspected acute heart failure and raised natriuretic peptide levels have a transthoracic doppler 2D echocardiogram within 48 hours of admission.
  • Adults admitted to hospital with acute heart failure have input within 24 hours of admission from a dedicated specialist heart failure team.
  • Adults with acute heart failure due to left ventricular systolic dysfunction are started on, or continue with, beta‑blocker treatment during their hospital admission.
  • Adults admitted to hospital with acute heart failure and reduced left ventricular ejection fraction are offered an angiotensin‑converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor and an aldosterone antagonist.
  • Adults with acute heart failure have a follow‑up clinical assessment by a member of the community – or hospital‑based specialist heart failure team within two weeks of hospital discharge.

The full guidance is available at https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/qs103

The long-term management of chronic heart failure is not covered by this quality standard but is covered in separate guidance: NICE guideline (CG108) and quality standard referral (QS9).

Obesity quality standard

NICE has also recently published a quality standard (QS111) ‘Obesity in adults: prevention and lifestyle weight management programmes’. One of the standards advises general practice teams and other healthcare professionals to offer referral to a lifestyle weight management programme to any adult identified as overweight or obese with comorbidities.

For more information on the new obesity quality standards, the full guidance is available at https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/qs111

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