The risk of stroke from atrial fibrillation (AFib) is real, and can quickly change a patient's life. As you know, the scientific evidence confirms that oral anticoagulation is highly effective at reducing stroke risk. Yet, elderly patients are too often under-anticoagulted, owing in part to their lack of understanding about stroke risk and the value of anticoagulation. This tip sheet offers talking points to help health care professionals help their patients to better understand why anticoagulation is critical and how adherence will allow them to celebate more years without a stroke.
The Alliance for Aging Research led AFib Optimal Treatment Task Force submitted a letter to the CDC commenting on the agency's Healthy People 2020 goals. The letter recommended:
The CDC should add Afib as a modifiable risk factor for stroke
The CDC address the under anticoagulation of older AFib patients as an emerging issue in heart disease and stroke
The Alliance for Aging Research signed onto a letter requesting the National Institute on Aging (NIA), National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), and other relevant NIH agencies, institutes, and offices provide technical assistance and otherwise support an effort to improve prevention of AFib-related stroke in older persons.
On October 16, 2014 the Alliance for Aging Research convened a symposium to discuss those factors leading to the undertreatment of elderly AFib patients and to identify gaps in current clinical practice, outreach, education, research, and policy. Read the full whitepaper to see the complete set of recommendations.
A survey of more than 500 adults with atrial fibrillation age 65 and over, explored first diagnosis, referrals, their treatment decision process, anticoagulant use, medication switching, bleeding complications, and more.
September 4, 2012
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
Department of Health and Human Services
Attn: CMS-1590-P P.O. Box 8013
Baltimore, MD 21244-8013
RE: Comments on Proposed Rule for Revisions to the 2013 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule
Dear Administrator Tavenner:
Because of the growing impact atrial fibrillation (AFib) is having on our aging population, the AFib Optimal Treatment Task Force, comprised of 12 leading organizations in the thrombosis space, formed in 2011 to raise awareness of the impact of the disease and to explore issues related to the process used by healthcare providers to assess both stroke and bleeding risk in making decisions about anticoagulation therapy for patients with AFib. We appreciate the opportunity to comment on the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) Proposed Rule for Revisions to the 2013 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule. Our comments on the proposed rule will be limited to a new measure #1525, Chronic Anticoagulation Therapy, which is under consideration by CMS for inclusion in the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) for CY2013. Recent expert consensus led by the AFib Optimal Treatment Task Force supports the use of this measure but with an additional recommendation to encourage routine and proper bleeding risk assessment. We urge you to include a modified version of measure #1525 in the final rule that encourages a bleeding risk assessment in addition to a stroke risk assessment to ensure that Medicare beneficiaries with AFib are presented with all treatment options that may be available for them.
March 15, 2012
Joe V. Selby, M.D., M.P.H.
Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute
1701 Pennsylvania Ave, NW Suite 300
Washington, D.C. 20006
RE: Comments on PCORI National Priorities for Research and Research Agenda
Dear Dr. Selby:
The groups below comprise a task force of leading organizations in the thrombosis space that are exploring issues related to optimal stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation. Participants in this task force represent various audiences—from patients to health care providers—that are unified by the desire to improve the way in which stroke and bleeding risk are assessed in atrial fibrillation patients and ensure proper treatment of these patients. In our capacity as health care stakeholders, we support the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute’s (PCORI) mission to improve health care delivery and outcomes by producing and promoting high integrity, evidence-based information that comes from research guided by patients, caregivers and the health care community. As such we appreciate the opportunity to comment on PCORI’s national research priorities and research agenda.
Home > Aging Topics > Atrial Fibrillation > AHRQ Comments
October 14, 2011
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
Effective Health Care Program
Scientific Resource Center, Oregon EPC
Mail Code: BICC
3181 S.W. Sam Jackson Park Road
Portland, Oregon 97239-3098
RE: Comment on Key Questions for Stroke Prevention in Atrial Fibrillation
Dear Sir or Madam:
Thank you for the opportunity to comment on AHRQ’s key questions related to the Effective Health Care Program’s comparative effectiveness review of stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation. We believe this is an important time to review in light of the growing impact atrial fibrillation has on our aging population and the uncertainty that exists about the best way to treat older patients with the condition.