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Oct 2022

Managing Patients with Heart Failure in Primary Care


Heart failure (HF) is a serious, life-long condition. With early diagnosis, lifestyle changes and proper management however, people can have a good quality of life. This tool is designed to educate and support family physicians and primary care nurse practitioners in diagnosing and implementing treatment for adult patients (≥ 18 years) with heart failure.

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About the tool

Divided into five sections, the Managing Patients with Heart Failure in Primary Care Tool can help guide discussions and decision-making  between providers and their patients with heart failure. This tool outlines steps and strategies for initial assessment and diagnosis, advanced care planning and palliative care, management, monitoring and the coordination of care. 

The Managing Patients with Heart Failure in Primary Care Tool was developed using the Centre for Effective Practice’s (CEP’s) integrated knowledge translation approach. This approach ensures that providers are engaged throughout the development processes through the application of user-centered design methodology. Clinical leadership of the resource was provided by Dr. Rahul Jain. End users and clinical experts were also engaged to provide feedback.

The tool is one of several clinical tools developed as part of the Knowledge Translation in Primary Care Initiative. This multi-year initiative is a collaboration between the Centre for Effective Practice, Ontario College of Family Physicians (OCFP), and Nurse Practitioners’ Association of Ontario (NPAO). Funded by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, this initiative supports primary care providers with the development of a series of clinical tools and health information resources. Learn more about the Knowledge Translation in Primary Care Initiative (KTinPC).

Clinical leads

  • Rahul Jain


    Dr. Rahul Jain, MD CCFP MScCH (HPTE) is an academic Family Physician and Hospitalist at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre. He is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Toronto.

    With respect to heart failure initiatives, he is involved with guideline development (C-CHANGE and CCS), knowledge translation activities including presenting at national conferences, co-leading an update of the outpatient HF flowsheet to guide clinicians in practice, invited to speak at the HeartLife Foundation conference for patients/caregivers, and volunteers with the Heart and Stroke Foundation as a  spokesperson on media campaigns and on roundtable discussions to build a national action plan for heart failure.

    Dr. Jain provided clinical leadership for the development of the heart failure tool, outpatient flowsheet, and academic detailing topic, and was offered compensation for his role.

Clinical Working Group

  • Brenda Albuquerque-Boutilier, Lived Experience Advisor
  • Greg Griffins, Lived Experience Advisor
  • Jeff Myers, MD, MSEd, CCFP(PC)
  • Karen Harkness, RN PhD CCN (C) CHFN
  • Leah Steinberg, MD, MA, FCFP
  • Pamela Lai, MD, CCFP
  • Stacey Milo, MScN, NP-PHC

Clinical Working Group members were offered an honorarium for their participation. Thank you to all our members for their work!

Conflict of Interest

Focus group and usability participants received a token of appreciation (e.g., gift certificate).

Expert Reviewers

Additional Resources

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