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Background: Knowledge of patient reported outcomes helps to provide personalized care on a patient level, optimize care on a population level, and identify the most appropriate patientreported outcomes for clinical trials. To be able to provide personalized care to patients with HF, it is important to know which treatment goals patients with HF consider the most important. This is particularly useful for interventions aimed at improving symptoms, functional status, or health-related quality of life. Aim The aim of this study was (1) to explore which treatment goals patientswith heart failure (HF) perceive as important for their treatment and (2) to identify which treatment goals take priority over other treatment goals. Methods The study had a qualitativedesign and included one focus group interview with 6 patients with HF. Data were analyzed using qualitative content analysis. Results The overall theme of this study was found to be ‘Not getting worse’. This theme was composed of 4 categories that described how the patients perceived the goals of treatment: to decrease symptoms, to improve physical function, to prevent readmission, and to live a normal life. None of the participants mentioned improved survival or being cured of their HF as a treatment goal. Conclusion ‘Not getting worse’ was perceived as the treatment goal that matters to patients with HF and is in line with currently used endpoints for the evaluation of a treatment in a clinical trial. More research is necessary to develop endpoints that are consistent with the perception of patients, useful for clinical practice, and measurable.


Mary MacKillop Institute for Health Research

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Journal Article

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