Examples of what has been done

National standardised pathways and models of care for heart failure


The National Clinical HF Programme 1 is a national standardised pathway and model of care for the patient journey in HF, jointly authored by professional medical bodies and the Irish Government’s HSE Directorate of Clinical Strategy and Programmes. The Programme calls for several key improvements in quality, access and costs of HF care.

What they did

The programme aims to roll out a co-ordinated, multidisciplinary and patient focused disease management programme to improve the management of heart failure patients in Ireland.

Key areas for improvement include 1:

  • Structured and coordinated disease management for every heart failurepatient
  • better prevention of heart failure
  • timely and accurate heart failure diagnostics
  • reduce recurrent hospital admissions and the length of hospital stay

What they achieved?

The programme has so far achieved several deliverables:2

  • development of a model of care document
  • set up of heart failure units in 7 hospitals in 2011
  • the development of clinical datasets and a portal to report and record data
  • activities to improve heart failure care in communities
  • activities with the Pharmacist and Medicines Management Group

Links, references, and key reading



  1. Health Service Executive Ireland. National Clinical Programme for Heart Failure. Secondary National Clinical Programme for Heart Failure. http://www.hse.ie/heartfailureprogramme/.
  2. McDonald K, Black R. Heart Failure Programme – Update March 2012. Secondary Heart Failure Programme – Update March 2012 2012. http://www.hse.ie/eng/about/Who/clinical/natclinprog/heartfailureprogramme/hf.pdf.