Honourable Deputy Premier and Alberta Health Minister Sarah Hoffman and Honourable Minister Irfan Sabir visited the CHARM Clinic on April 27, 2017. They came to understand the impact of congestive heart failure on Albertans and how re-hospitalizations can be reduced. Dr. Anmol S. Kapoor, Cardiologist, welcomed them and presented data from the Charm Clinic. The innovative work done by the clinic (which is run on a charitable basis) was greatly appreciated.
Why Congestive Heart Failure?
Source: Heart and Stroke Foundation (Slide 1 and 2)
The CHARM clinic is physician directed, however the patient care is managed by Nurses. The Heart Failure team consists of a Cardiologist/Heart Failure Specialist, Internal Medicine Specialist, Family Physicians, Heart Function Nurse, Respiratory Therapist, Echocardiogram and Stress Test Technicians. CHARM clinic is located in Northeast Calgary, which has a high number of visible minorities, with many having English as their second language. With easy access to Calgary Lab Services, CTRAIN/bus route, and free parking, CHARM Clinic provides services to the surrounding township of Chestermere, Strathmore, and Airdrie. The total number of family physicians that the clinic serves is over 200, with a service area of over 400 000.
Slide 3: Patient Demographics of the CHARM Clinic
At present, when a family physician suspects HF, they refer the patient to a Heart Failure specialist. The appointment with the Specialist can take up to 6 months. In this time, the patient’s condition can worsen, and the patient may end up in hospital. There are many heart failure patients that live in the community, however they do not have access to heart failure clinics (often located in hospital). These patients rely on their family doctors and intermittent care by their Cardiologists. When their condition worsens, (i.e. develop symptoms of shortness of breath or worsening heart failure) they present themselves to emergency rooms, often leading to an admission, which costs the healthcare system and at the same time, it negatively impacts their survival.
Slide 4: The Cost of Hospitalizations in Alberta.
Slide 5: This is a pie chart showing co-morbidities in CHF patients at the CHARM Clinic – 26% have Diabetes, 31% have Coronary Artery Disease, 6% have COPD and 37% High Blood Pressure.
Since January 2016, data conclusively shows that 88 hospitalizations were prevented through the intervention of the CHARM Clinic.
Slide 6: The impact of the CHARM Clinic. These numbers do not include physician visits, medications or ICU stays.
Slide 7: How the CHARM Clinic is funded
Donations and DIL Walk fund raising events, help to support the CHARM clinic. If you are interested to make a donation, please visit www.dilwalk.ca. All donations will receive a income tax receipt. Also, please do talk to your MLAs and MPs and help us give a helping hand to heart failure patients.
The CHARM (Community Heart Failure Assessment, Rehabilitation and Management) clinic at Advanced Cardiology Consultants and Diagnostics (ACCD) is Alberta’s ONLY community based, outpatient clinic. The clinic is run on a charitable basis with the support and donations from the DIL Walk Foundation and ACCD.