Clinical Preventive Services for Patients at Risk for Cardiovascular Disease, National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, 2005-2006
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Clinical Preventive Services for Patients at Risk for Cardiovascular Disease, National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, 2005-2006

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  • Alternative Title:
    Prev Chronic Dis
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    Clinical preventive services can detect diseases early, when they are most treatable, but these services may not be provided as recommended. Assessing the provision of services to patients at risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD) could help identify disparities and areas for improvement.


    We used data on patient visits (n = 21,261) from the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, 2005-2006, and classified patients with hypertension, hyperlipidemia, obesity, or diabetes as being at risk for CVD. We assessed differences in the provision of preventive services offered to patients who were and who were not at risk for CVD. Further, for those at risk, we compared the demographic characteristics of those who had and who had not been offered services.


    Patients at risk for CVD received significantly more preventive services compared with those not at risk. For patients at risk for CVD, aspirin therapy was more likely to be recommended to those aged 65 years or older than those aged 45 to 64 years and to men than women. Cholesterol screening was more likely for men and was less likely for patients with Medicare/Medicaid or no insurance than for patients who were insured. Rates of counseling for diet and nutrition, weight reduction, and exercise were low overall, but younger patients received these services more than older patients did.


    Patients at risk for CVD are not all receiving the same level of preventive care, suggesting the need to clarify clinical practice guidelines and provide clinicians with education and support for more effective lifestyle counseling.

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