Self-care in heart failure patients: major results of a 7-year research program in Italy
Self-care improves patients’ outcomes in heart failure (HF). In this article we report the main results of a 7-year research program conducted in Italy. First, we established validity and reliability of the Self-Care of HF Index v.6.2 and the Caregiver Contribution to Self-Care of HF Index in the Italian population. Second, we tested the situation-specific theory of HF self-care that showed adequate fit to the data. Third, we showed in a sample of 1.192 HF patients that only about the 20% of them performs adequate self-care. Forth, we described caregiver contribution to self-care in a sample of 515 HF caregivers and we showed a low level of caregiver contribution to HF self-care. Fifth, we showed that patients and caregivers influence each other self-care. Six, we found that self-care confidence mediates between cognition and self-care, and comorbidity moderates between self-care confidence and selfcare. Intervention studies are needed to improve self-care in Italian HF patients.