Heart failure

We are a nursing team specialising in the assessment, treatment and education of patients with confirmed diagnosis of heart failure, their families and their carers. We liaise with your GP and, if appropriate, the cardiologist involved in your care.

Overview of the service

The Heart Failure Service aims to provide evidence based treatment for patients with heart failure. This includes monitoring of the condition, behavioural modification, health promotion, specialist care to improve quality of life by slowing disease progression and improving symptoms to reduce mortality, preventing re-admission to hospital and improving palliative care provisions for patients and carers.

To provide evidence based treatment and implement best practice for patients with heart failure by taking an active role in titration of heart failure medication to optimum doses and by providing education and support for other healthcare professionals involved in the care of these patients to share their expertise.

Who can access this service?

This service is available for patients who:

  • Are over 18 years of age
  • Are registered with a Sutton GP
  • Have a diagnosis of heart failure

Team members who may be involved in patient care

  • Heart Failure Nurse Specialists

Is patient self-referral available?

Patients can self refer if they have previously been treated by the team. 

For new patients, any member of the health care team can refer you. This includes your Practice Nurse, District Nurse, GP and/or Social Worker. All referrals will be assessed to ensure they meet our service criteria and establish if other services are more appropriate to meet your needs.

Is transport provided?

No, patients will need to provide their own transport to clinics.

Are home visits available?

Yes, home visits are available for patients who meet the relevant criteria. For more information about home visits, please contact the team on the details below.

What can I expect from the service?

We run clinics in Sutton and provide home visits to those unable to attend clinics. We provide individualised care and work with you to develop a management plan. This includes optimising medical therapy to try and improve your quality of life and help reduce or prevent admission to hospital.

The patient assessment:

Your allocated Heart Failure Specialist Nurse will:

  • Take a detailed history of your condition
  • Ask you about your symptoms and how these affect your everyday life
  • Discuss your medications with you
  • Listen to your chest on each visit and record your blood pressure and pulse
  • Advise you if you need to have some blood tests done
  • Inform your GP of any recommended changes to your treatment

Treatment:

Following the outcome of your assessment, you may be given:

  • New treatment/advice on medication
  • Advice on how to manage your activities of daily living
  • Education and self management techniques

What does the service expect from me?

We like to work with the patient to achieve agreed goals. We encourage you to self manage. We expect patients to attend all appointments as our service must adhere to current ‘Did Not Attend’ Discharge Policy. If you need to cancel your appointment please contact the administration centre on the number provided below.

Is there a cost for this service?

This is a free service for all who are eligible for NHS care.

What happens when the service ends?

You will remain under review until your condition stabilises and you are on optimum medical therapy.  Even after discharge you will have the option to self refer back to the service as needed.

Contact us

For all enquiries from both patients and healthcare professionals, please contact:

The Royal Marsden Community Services
Carew House
Floor 2
Railway Approach
Wallington
SM6 0DX
Tel: 0208 661 3908
Email: rmh-tr.rmcsreferral@nhs.net
Fax: 0208 661 3910

Heart Failure Specialist Service leaflet