The overall purpose of this project is to improve the clinical outcomes of veterans with ischemic heart disease (IHD) through implementation of evidence-based lipid management, with a particular focus on veterans whose primary lipid abnormality is a low level of HDL-cholesterol (the “good” cholesterol).
The major objectives are 1. to determine whether a multifaceted intervention results in improved guideline-concordant lipid management for patients with low HDL-cholesterol; and 2. to test the relative effectiveness of three different reminder systems on physician prescribing behavior.
The primary care clinic at each of the six VISN 13 facilities will serve as intervention sites. Within those sites we will randomize providers to one of three reminder systems. Control sites will consist of twelve other facilities matched to the intervention sites on the basis of facility characteristics. We will use a modified “pre-post” nested cohort design that allows us to evaluate the effect of the intervention controlling for secular trends. Target patients will be identified based on the following: 1. an IHD diagnosis within the past 5 years; 2. regular follow-up in a primary care clinic; 3. most recent LDL-cholesterol < 130 mg/dl and HDL-cholesterol < 40 mg/dl; 4. No lipid therapy within prior 6 months. The intervention will consist of: a. an on-site interactive educational workshop for providers; b. reminders (either patient-directed mailed reminders, computer-chart reminders at the time of visit, or automatic consults); c. opinion leader recruitment and “activation”. The primary outcome is proportion of target patients receiving guideline-concordant therapy. For objective 1, the outcome will be compared between intervention and control sites. For objective 2, the outcome will be compared between the three groups randomized to the different reminder systems. In addition, providers will be surveyed with a written questionnaire to determine their reaction to the educational workshop and the different reminder systems.
Data analysis is ongoing and final results not yet known.
This study will help guide quality improvement efforts aimed at improving provider compliance with evidence-based guidelines for the prevention of coronary heart disease.
External Links for this Project
None at this time.