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Kaul P, McAlister FA, Ezekowitz JA, et al. Resource Use in the Last 6 Months of Life Among Patients With Heart Failure in Canada. Arch Intern Med. 2011;171(3):211–217. doi:https://doi.org/10.1001/archinternmed.2010.365
Heart failure (HF) is a debilitating and chronic condition associated with significant morbidity and mortality. More than 500 000 Canadians live with HF, and approximately 50 000 new patients are diagnosed each year.1 Often considered a disease of elderly individuals, the prevalence of HF increases notably with age. In 2003, 0.2% of Canadians younger than 50 years reported having HF; the corresponding figure for those 80 years or older was 6.7%.2 Rates of HF are expected to increase exponentially in coming years as a result of several factors, including the aging of the Canadian population, improved survival rates after myocardial infarction, and the development of new therapies for more effective treatment of those with HF.3-5 Quality of life for patients with HF is frequently poor, and long-term prognosis includes a 5-year mortality rate of 69% among hospitalized patients in the community.6-8
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