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IIR 21-255 – HSR Study

IIR 21-255
Pharmacist-guided, patient-driven management of high blood pressure in CKD: A Novel Approach
Diana Jalal, MD
Iowa City VA Health Care System, Iowa City, IA
Iowa City, IA
Funding Period: October 2022 - September 2026


Background. Chronic kidney disease (CKD) associates with high morbidity and mortality due to CKD progression and cardiovascular disease (CVD). Blood pressure (BP) lowering reduces the risk of CVD and CKD progression. In spite of the large number of BP medications available, a significant proportion of Veterans with CKD have BP above the goal. The current practice involves licensed providers performing medication titrations to achieve BP goals and is associated with limited patient engagement. Our preliminary data indicate that the implementation of pharmacist-guided patient-driven titration of BP medications is effective and feasible in CKD. In this model, Veterans self-manage their BP medications under the guidance of the clinical pharmacist based on a pre-determined medication titration plan. Significance. The prevalence of CKD is extremely high among Veterans, with some studies reporting a prevalence of 47% (vs 11% in the general population). Here, we propose a novel interdisciplinary care model that engages the Veterans as an active participant in their care with the goal of improving BP control to improve long term outcomes. The application addresses a key HSR&D priority (management of complex chronic disease). Innovation and Impact. First, the proposed care model is one that has not been tested and includes the clinical pharmacist working with the provider and the Veterans so that Veterans with CKD can self-manage their hypertension. While self-management is exercised in CKD once patients are on dialysis (via home dialysis modalities), the self-management approach is not utilized in the earlier stages of CKD. Second, in the approach, we will utilize a transdisciplinary approach to evaluate the implementation of pharmacist-guided self- management of BP medications and we will apply constructs of an implementation science framework, Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research (CFIR), to understand Veteran and system factors that may either facilitate or impede the implementation and sustainment of the pharmacist-guided self-management approach. Specific aims. Specific aim 1 will evaluate if pharmacist-guided self-management of BP medications is more effective than self-monitoring of home BP + the standard care amongst Veterans with CKD. Specific aim 2 will identify and understand Veteran factors that may influence the acceptability of and the adherence to the self- management approach whereas specific aim 3 will focus on understanding system factors that may facilitate or impede the implementation of the self-management approach. Methods. One hundred and sixty Veterans with uncontrolled hypertension and either stage 2 CKD with albuminuria or stage 3 and 4 CKD will be randomized to either pharmacist-guided self-management or to self- monitoring + the standard practice for 12 months. Aim 1 will evaluate change in [standardized] office systolic BP at 12 months as the primary outcome. Aim 2 will utilize a mixed methods approach including semi- structured interviews to evaluate a sample of 20 Veterans in each of the study arms. We will further design data abstraction tools to evaluate the adherence to the intervention. In aim 3, we will utilize CFIR constructs to guide our qualitative semi-structured interviews with key organizational stakeholders including PACT clinical pharmacists, PCPs, and CKD providers (20 key stakeholders). Implementation. The PI will implement the pharmacist-guided self-management approach with the Pharmacy and Ambulatory care services as operational partners. The implementation of this approach will improve the patient experience (Survey of Healthcare Experiences of Patients) and the quality of care (Clinical Performance Measurement Program and the Strategic Analytics for Improvement and Learning).

External Links for this Project

NIH Reporter

Grant Number: I01HX003533-01A1

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None at this time.

DRA: Kidney Disorders
DRE: TRL - Applied/Translational
Keywords: Care Coordination, Pharmacology, Symptom Management
MeSH Terms: None at this time.

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