This post was authored by William J. Oetgen, MD, MBA, FACC, ACC executive vice president.
This week, representatives from medical specialty societies and other stakeholder groups gathered at ACC’s Heart House in Washington, DC, to discuss issues in lipid management and begin addressing gaps in care during the LDL: Address the Risk Think Tank. The meeting kicked-off a multi-stakeholder quality initiative to improve patient outcomes by driving awareness of gaps in lipid management and the importance of managing LDL-related risk.
Lipid management crosses over many medical specialty areas, including cardiology, primary care and internal medicine, endocrinology, pediatrics, pharmacists, nurse practitioners and physician assistants. As a result, this meeting featured representatives with a wide variety of expertise and disciplines, as well as patient representatives.
Throughout the day-long meeting, robust conversations took place on hot topics in lipid management. The goal was not to reach consensus, but to address issues that the ACC feels are important to optimizing lipid management for patients with heart disease. First, we explored lipid guidelines, their treatment target, how they were developed and their role in the future. Next, we tackled gaps in care by discussing diagnosis and screening, treatment initiation and intensification, communications among providers, transitions in levels of care and access to treatment. Finally, we delved into the treatment of special populations, such as pediatric patients and complex patients, and discussed the relationship between perception of adverse effects with noncompliance and patient refusal of therapy, as well as statin intolerance.
I’m invigorated by the interactive conversations that took place during the Think Tank and how insight uncovered during the meeting can be used to identify practical guidance for lipid management for clinicians. The intention is to publish proceedings of the meeting and use the outcomes to inform and direct the larger LDL quality program. Stay tuned in the coming months for more about this new initiative.