Effective Management of Patients with Heart Failure During and After the COVID-19 Pandemic




The burdens associated with heart failure (HF) are substantial, with significant impacts to morbidity, mortality, and health-related quality of life. Despite these burdens, recent data indicate that adherence to guideline-directed medical therapy (GDMT) remains suboptimal among patients with cardiovascular disease (CVD), an issue which has been further complicated by the ongoing chaos of the COVID-19 pandemic. Although there was concern early on surrounding the role of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS) in the spread of SARS-CoV-2, recent evidence from large retrospective studies suggests that the use of angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors/angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs) is not associated with increased rates of COVID-19 infection or risk of severe disease.

To ensure patients with HF receive the best standards of care during and after the COVID-19 pandemic, nurse practitioners, physicians, and physician assistants must be educated on the risks of severe illness from COVID-19 in patients with CV comorbidities, up-to-date GDMT on the management of HF, particularly the importance of maintaining ACE inhibitor and ARB therapy, and the role of telemedicine in providing best standards of care under the current social distancing mandates.



Shashank Desai, MD, MBA
Director, Ambulatory Services
Inova Heart & Vascular Institute
Medical Director, Heart Failure/Transplant Program
INOVA Fairfax Hospital
The Heart and Vascular Institute
Falls Church, Virginia


Beth Towery Davidson DNP, ACNP, CCRN, CHFN, FHFSA
Adjunct Faculty, School of Nursing
Vanderbilt University
Director, Heart Failure Disease Management Program
TriStar Centennial Medical Center
Nashville, Tennessee


Release date: May 26, 2021
Expiration date: May 26, 2022
Estimated time to complete activity: 1 hour



This educational initiative has been designed for nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and physicians who practice in primary care and specialty settings.


Upon completion of this educational activity, participants should be able to:

  • Discuss the safety of RAAS antagonist use in patients with CVD and related comorbidities during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic
  • Outline how to apply evidence-based GDMT into the management of patients with HF
  • Explain the burden of COVID-19 on patients with CVD and related comorbidities
  • Discuss how to integrate telemedicine initiatives into the effective management of patients with HF

There are no fees for participating and receiving CME/CE credit for this activity. During the period of May 26, 2021 through May 26, 2022, participants must:

  • Read the learning objectives and faculty disclosures
  • Complete the pretest
  • Study the educational activity
  • Complete the posttest and the evaluation form

A statement of credit will be issued only upon receipt of a completed activity evaluation form and a completed posttest with a score of 70% or better.




Nurse Practitioner Credit Designation


This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the Accreditation Standards of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) through the joint providership of Global Education Group and Integrity Continuing Education. Global Education Group is accredited by the American Association of Nurse Practitioners as an approved provider of nurse practitioner continuing education. Provider number: 110121. This activity is approved for 1.0 contact hour (which includes 0.5 hours of pharmacology).


Accreditation Statement
Integrity Continuing Education is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

Credit Designation
Integrity Continuing Education designates this enduring activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s). Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Contact Information
For information about ACCME accreditation of this activity, please contact Integrity Continuing Education at (855) 835-4004 or cme@integrityce.com.

For information about AANP accreditation of this activity, please contact Global Education Group at (303) 395-1782 or cme@globaleducationgroup.com.


Integrity Continuing Education and Global Education Group requires instructors, planners, managers, and other individuals who are in a position to control the content of this activity to disclose any real or apparent conflict of interest they may have as related to the content of this activity. All identified conflicts of interest are thoroughly vetted by Integrity Continuing Education for fair balance, scientific objectivity of studies mentioned in the materials or used as the basis for content, and appropriateness of patient care recommendations.

The following faculty/planners reported the financial relationships or relationships to products or devices they or their spouse/life partner have with commercial interests related to the content of these CME activities:

Shashank Desai, MD
Reported no real or apparent conflicts of interest

Consulting Fees – Myokardia (Advisory Board); Novartis (Speakers Bureau)

The planners and managers, Michelle R. Rizzo, ELS, and Donna Fausak, hereby state that they or their spouse/life partner do not have any financial relationships or relationships to products or devices with any commercial interest related to the content of this activity of any amount during the past 12 months. The Global Education Group planners and managers, Kristin Delisi, NP, Lindsay Borvansky, Andrea Funk, Liddy Knight, and Ashley Cann, also have nothing to disclose.


This educational activity may contain discussion of published and/or investigational uses of agents that are not indicated by the US Food and Drug Administration. Integrity Continuing Education and Global Education Group do not recommend the use of any agent outside of the labeled indications.

The opinions expressed in the educational activity are those of the faculty and do not necessarily represent the views of any organization associated with this activity. Please refer to the official prescribing information for each product for discussion of approved indications, contraindications, and warnings.


When you participate in an online educational activity sponsored by Integrity Continuing Education, Inc., you will be asked for your name, degree(s), affiliation(s), street address, telephone number, fax number, and…(continued)


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The information provided at this activity is for continuing education purposes only and is not meant to substitute for the independent medical judgment of healthcare professionals relative to diagnostic and treatment options of a specific patient’s medical condition.


This activity is supported by an educational grant from Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation.


This CME activity is provided by Integrity Continuing Education.

This AANP activity is jointly provided by Global Education Group and Integrity Continuing Education.


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