The heart truth professional education campaign on women and heart disease: Needs assessment and evaluation results

Janet Pregler, Karen M. Freund, Mary Kleinman, Maureen G. Phipps, Rose S. Fife, Becky Gams, Ana E. Núñez, Margaret R. Seaver, Cathy J. Lazarus, Nancy C. Raymond, Joan Briller, Sebastian Uijtdehaage, Cindy S. Moskovic, Gretchen Guiton, Michele David, Geralde V. Gabeau, Stacie Geller, Kelli Meekma, Christopher Moore, Candace RobertsonGloria Sarto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Background: Heart disease is the leading cause of death for women in the United States. Research has identified that women are less likely than men to receive medical interventions for the prevention and treatment of heart disease. Methods and Results: As part of a campaign to educate healthcare professionals, 1245 healthcare professionals in 11 states attended a structured 1-hour continuing medical education (CME) program based on the 2004 AHA Evidence-Based Guidelines for Cardiovascular Disease Prevention in Women and completed a pretest and posttest evaluation. We identified significant knowledge deficits in the pretest: 45% of attendees would initially recommend lifestyle changes alone, rather than statin therapy, for women diagnosed with coronary artery disease (CAD); 38% identified statin therapy as less effective in women compared with men for preventing CAD events; 27% identified Asian American women at low risk (rather than high risk) for type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM); and 21% identified processed meat (rather than baked goods) as the principal dietary source of trans fatty acids. Overall, healthcare professionals answered 5.1 of 8 knowledge questions correctly in the pretest, improving to 6.8 questions in the posttest (p<0.001). Family physicians, obstetrician/gynecologists, general internists, nurse practitioners/physician assistants, and registered nurses all statistically significantly improved knowledge and self-assessed skills and attitudes as measured by the posttest. Conclusions: Significant knowledge deficits are apparent in a cross-section of healthcare providers attending a CME lecture on women and heart disease. A 1-hour presentation was successful in improving knowledge and self-assessed skills and attitudes among primary care physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and registered nurses.1542

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1541-1547
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Women's Health
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2009


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