Impact of Interprofessional Education Addressing Social Determinants of Health in Closing Gaps in Management of Atrial Fibrillation
Multiple studies have demonstrated that social determinants of health (SDOH) are directly and indirectly associated with mortality and morbidity in cardiovascular (CV) disease, especially in nonvalvular atrial fibrillation (NVAF) management and outcomes. Despite this evidence, healthcare professional (HCP) awareness of disparities and their magnitude is low. Interprofessional, multidisciplinary collaboration is essential to addressing SDOH in cardiovascular care. Therefore, Clinical Care Options and Practicing Clinicians Exchange, in collaboration with the Academy of Physician Associates in Cardiology implemented a multi-activity educational initiative to address the educational needs supported by an independent medical educational grant. The content was focused on equipping clinicians with interprofessional and multidisciplinary approaches to close clinical gaps in NVAF management that have been found to have a relevant and practical impact on patient outcomes.
Three 1-hour, CE/CME-certified live webinars were broadcast in March and April 2022. The webinars featured three expert faculty: 1 cardiologist, 1 internal medicine physician, and 1 physician associate in cardiology in a roundtable format, discussing the importance of recognizing the impact of SDOH on NVAF management and related patient outcomes and strategies to address them in cardiology practice, with a live question and answer session. Learner knowledge and competence were assessed through pre-activity and post-activity questions with a Chi square analysis.
A total of 621 learners attended the 3 programs with representation from physicians (16%), pharmacists (26%), nurse practitioners (41%), physician associates (15%), and nurses (10%). Forty-four percent of the learners care for at least 10 patients with atrial fibrillation per week. Pre-activity vs post-activity knowledge and competence improved across the domains of the impact of SDOH on cardiovascular outcomes (66% vs 76%; p< 0.001), disparities in anticoagulation prescribing (48% vs 86%; p< 0.001), and strategies to address SDOH in cardiovascular practice (50% vs 63%; p=0.0053).
An interprofessional and multidisciplinary, roundtable educational design is effective for improving learner knowledge and competence with recognizing and implementing strategies to address SDOH in cardiovascular practice.
HCPs may underestimate the impact of SDOH and disparities and need to be kept informed of practical strategies to address them in cardiovascular clinical practice through interprofessional and multidisciplinary education efforts. Additional educational activities on this topic will include an endured webinar, 1 faculty authored, text-based commentary addressing frequently asked questions, and 2 podcasts featuring expert faculty interviews.