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March 4, 2018

HFSA President’s Blog: Update on Heart Failure Awareness Week and Research Initiatives

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

The website and social media stats are in and I am pleased to report that National Heart Failure Awareness Week was a spectacular success.

Our website had nearly 3 times the number of pageviews as last year. HFSA promoted #HFWeek2018 as the official hashtag for National Heart Failure Awareness Week, and the results were excellent.  Our Twitter Account was listed as a “Top Influencer” of #HFWeek2018 and came in #1 of Mentions and Tweets.

In addition, HFSA hosted a Twitter Chat, #HFChat2018, and invited Mended Hearts, the Heart Brothers Foundation, and AAHFN to participate in a twitter conversation on the status of heart failure, ways to improve quality of care, and how to increase awareness of heart failure.  The Thunderclap message was also very successful.  It reached 68 cities in 8 different countries. We achieved 103% of our supporter goal which, when the number of followers per supporter is factored in, translates into a reach of more than 300,000. My thanks to all of you who contributed and a special thanks to the HFSA staff!

One of the major goals of our strategic plan is to re-invigorate our research portfolio by expanding and refining research programs, and engaging investigators, government, industry, and patients to help drive the research agenda. I am excited by our progress and want to take this opportunity to summarize some of the recent activities in this area:

  • The HFSA Research Network has recently agreed to collaborate with the VICTORIA Trial to enhance enrollment in the United States. As many of you know, enrollment in US heart failure trials has been low and suboptimal over the past decade.  There are many reasons for this and we are tackling some of them through the Heart Failure Collaboratory effort.  One way of addressing low enrollment is through an organized HFSA investigative network that will optimize efficiencies and add value to the recruitment process.  We are hoping that the collaboration with the VICTORIA trial will make a meaningful difference in the level of enrollment.  Much more needs to be done to enhance suboptimal US enrollment in major trials, but this collaboration with the VICTORIA trial is an excellent initial step and we are excited to see the results.
  • The HFSA Research Network is also in discussions with the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute about opportunities for clinical trials.
  • More information and details about these collaborations will be forthcoming.

If you represent a site that is interested in participating in heart failure clinical research, please reply to this email and we will forward your information to Susan Ammon, who is managing the HFSA Investigator Network project.

So, as you can see, HFSA is very active in fostering high value clinical research that leads to innovation in patient care. Additionally, we are developing a website tool that will make it easier to find information about clinical trials that are important and of value to our patients and our members.  We also plan to hold a training program for site-based researchers on the Tuesday afternoon at the end of the HFSA Annual Scientific Meeting to further optimize skills in conducting clinical research.  The goal is very simple: we want the United States to be the very best in conducting clinical research in the heart failure space so that we can be good global partners.  There is no second place in my mind.  I know we can do it.  We have the resources, intellect, infrastructure, and wisdom to be the very best in advancing therapies through the development process to enable us to provide the very best care for our patients.



Christopher O’Connor, MD, FHFSA
President HFSA
Vision: To Significantly Reduce the Burden of Heart Failure


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