Review of Cardiovascular Disease Programs

10.3 Overlaying disease specific journeys for stroke and cardiac disease in rural and urban settings

Overlaying disease specific journeys for stroke and cardiac disease in rural and urban settings - Framework for recommendations - Review of Cardiovascular Disease Programs

Page last updated: 03 May 2012

Mapping sample journeys for specific diseases allow testing of grouped recommendations against some of the distinct differences experienced within the spectrum of CVD and across different settings. By mapping specific journeys, specific interventions are taken into account; which may make a significant difference even though it is to a sub-section of the broader population experiencing CVD.

The following diagrams map out a sample cardiac and sample stroke journey. While these journeys may differ from individuals’ specific experiences, they highlight some of the key differences between these two major diseases within the CVD group of diseases.

The sample journey describes CVD pathways, rather than providing examples of where the system is failing people with CVD.

10.3.1 Sample CVD journey

Figure 5 - CVD Journey
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Figure 5 shows a typical CVD journey from the community to the hospital and back into the community. The journey begins with community education about healthy living and how to recognise and respond to CVD warning signs, so that individuals know how to maintain their health, when to seek advice or treatment from their GP, and when to call an ambulance. At the Emergency Department, CVD patients will be diagnosed and, if necessary, admitted to a specialist unit for further assessment and treatment. On leaving hospital, a CVD patient will receive a discharge plan outlining next steps in treatment, such as follow-up care with a specialist or GP. Back in the community, care might include cardiac rehabilitation, GP and specialist appointments, support groups, self-management (eg improved diet) and, if needed, end of life care.

It is important to note that this diagram represents an ideal journey. For individuals experiencing CVD, this journey has infinite variations, many of them linked to less than ideal outcomes and indicative of past and current inadequacies in the existing service system for CVD.