Objectives To determine whether specialist nurse intervention improves outcome in patients with chronic heart failure. Design Randomised controlled trial.
Setting Acute medical admissions unit in a teaching hospital.
Participants 165 patients admitted with heart failure due to left ventricular systolic dysfunction. The intervention started before discharge and continued thereafter with home visits for up to 1 year.
Main outcome measures Time to first event analysis of death from all causes or readmission to hospital with worsening heart failure.
Results 31 patients (37%) in the intervention group died or were readmitted with heart failure compared with 45 (53%) in the usual care group (hazard ratio= 0.61, 95% confidence interval 0.33 to 0.96). Compared with usual care, patients in the intervention group had fewer readmissions for any reason (86 v 114, P=0.018), fewer admissions for heart failure (19 v 45, P<0.001) and spent fewer days in hospital for heart failure (mean 3.43 v 7.46 days, P=0.0051).
Conclusions Specially trained nurses can improve the outcome of patients admitted to hospital with heart failure.
- MULTIDISCIPLINARY INTERVENTION