Background: Heart failure drains significant financial resources with morbidity and mortality higher than cancer. Social support is defined as the care provided by the family members, friends and health care workers to the patients. Absence of social support and poor perceived social support will create stress, anxiety, depression and anger which further deteriorate the underlying disease and worsen quality of life. Discussion in group creates better understanding of the disease which helps the patients improving their skills in managing their condition.

Objective: To evaluate the impact of multidisciplinary team supervised social support program on components of psychosocial distress and knowledge about heart failure among heart failure patients.

Methods: Adult patients with heart failure attending King Fahad Medical City as inpatient or outpatient were enrolled in this prospective cohort study. Patients were given questionnaire to assess their perception of social support they have at their disposal, quality of life, knowledge regarding heart failure and self-care behavior. They then had interactive education in groups supervised by multidisciplinary team members about the pathogenesis of their disease with management strategies, dietary restriction, importance of exercise and healthy life style pattern. Patients shared their experiences in the group and had opportunity to learn from each other. Patients were assessed regarding their perceived social support, quality of life, knowledge regarding heart failure and self-care behavior immediately after the session and at 1 month interval.

Results: There were total 500 patients participated in the study. Among the study participants 62% were male and majority was living with the family. Components of psychosocial distress were present in up to 40% of study participants and only 36% considered knowledgeable regarding heart failure. After the interactive social support group meeting components of psychosocial distress were significantly reduced with significant improvement in knowledge about heart failure. At 1 month follow up participants reported persistent improvement in quality of life, improvement in self-care behavior, perceived social support and wanted to continue in social group program.

Conclusion: Social support program supervised by multidisciplinary team providing education and social support improved knowledge, self-care behavior, perceived social support and quality of life among heart failure patients.

Key words: Psychosocial distress, Heart Failure, Knowledge, Social support program

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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