Using Patients and Their Caregivers Feedback to Develop ENABLE CHF-PC: An Early Palliative Care Intervention for Advanced Heart Failure

Academic Article


  • Objective: Models of early, community-based palliative care for individuals with New York Heart Association (NYHA) class III/IV heart failure and their families are lacking. We used the Medical Research Council process of developing complex interventions to conduct a formative evaluation study to translate an early palliative care intervention from cancer to heart failure. Method: One component of the parent formative evaluation pilot study was qualitative satisfaction interviews with 8 patient–caregiver dyad participants who completed Educate, Nurture, Advise, Before Life Ends Comprehensive Heartcare For Patient and Caregivers (ENABLE CHF-PC) intervention. The ENABLE CHF-PC consists of an in-person palliative care assessment, weekly telehealth coaching sessions, and monthly follow-up. Subsequent to completing the coaching sessions, patient and caregiver participants were interviewed to elicit their experiences with ENABLE CHF-PC. Digitally recorded interviews were transcribed and analyzed using a thematic approach. Results: Patients (n = 8) mean age was 67.3, 62.5% were female, 75% were married/living with a partner; caregivers (n = 8) mean age was 56.8, and 87.5% were female. Four themes related to experiences with ENABLE CHF-PC included “allowed me to vent,” “gained perspective,” “helped me plan,” and “gained illness management and decision-making skills.” Recommendations for intervention modification included (1) start program at diagnosis, (2) maintain phone-based approach, and (3) expand topics and modify format. Conclusion: Patients and caregivers unanimously found the intervention to be helpful and acceptable. After incorporating modifications, ENABLE CHF-PC is currently undergoing efficacy testing in a large randomized controlled trial.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Akyar I; Dionne-Odom JN; Bakitas MA
  • Start Page

  • 103
  • End Page

  • 110
  • Volume

  • 34
  • Issue

  • 2