Heart Failure Bridge-Infusion Program

A comprehensive multidisciplinary heart failure program in the Center for Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant at Hartford Hospital


The Program 

Purpose: The main goal of the Heart Failure Bridge-Infusion Program is to safely transition patients from the hospital and avoid readmission by actively managing their needs in the outpatient setting.

Treatment:  In addition to oral therapies, the Heart Failure Bridge-Infusion Program has the capacity to administer intravenous medicines when needed in the management of acute decompensated heart failure in an effort to avoid emergency care.  Treatment is individually tailored to achieve euvolemia (the presence of the proper amount of blood in the body). Infusion therapy is given by specialized heart failure nurses over 2-3 hour sessions and repeated on multiple days as needed. It safely bridges patients from the hospital to the outpatient community preventing relapse and re-admission while allowing patients to stay in the comfort of their home. Outpatient diuretic infusion prevents deconditioning while promoting peer social interaction and emotional support.

Team: The Heart Failure Infusion Program functions within a multifaceted heart failure management program consisting of specialized dietary, nursing and provider care focused on treating, educating, and supporting patients with heart failure and their families.   The ongoing, intermittent reinforcement of Heart Failure Self Care by specialized nurses, dietitians, and advanced practice providers supported by heart failure specialized physicians under the umbrella of the Heart Failure Bridge-Infusion clinic facilitates patient compliance, satisfaction, and reduces admissions to the hospital while improving patients’ quality of life.


Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How are patients referred to the Bridge-Infusion Program?
A: Patients can be referred via Epic via the Ambulatory Referral to Heart Failure option and clicking infusion. Additionally, providers can call our office directly at (860) 972-1212 to refer patients. We may ask a few brief questions to ensure the patient is appropriate for our office and ask that you fax pertinent office notes, recent blood work, echocardiogram, patient’s demographics and any recent hospital admission notes. We will contact the patient directly to schedule the initial appointment and inform them of what to expect during the first visit.

Q: What is an “appropriate” Bridge-Infusion Program patient?
A: Due to the open nature of the treatment center patients should typically be behaviorally appropriate, have the functionality to move to treatment chair, and be fairly independent in the bathroom and be able to care for their sanitary needs if in need of intravenous treatment of heart failure. Patients unable to walk back and forth to the bathroom can bring an aid or family member to assist them. Additionally, patients need to be able to travel back and forth to the center possibly 1-2 times in a week initially. Our office does not make transportation arrangements.

Any patient with a new heart failure diagnosis or admission for heart failure would benefit from the education, support, and specialized care offered at the Heart Failure Bridge-Infusion Program.

Q: What can patients to expect when coming to the Bridge-Infusion center?
A: On the first visit, the nurses will spend time explaining what to expect and obtaining baseline patient data. Medication reconciliation is an important part of patient care and will be reviewed at length. You will meet with and be evaluated by an advanced practice provider specializing in heart failure management. Typically an intravenous line is placed and blood is drawn at every visit to closely monitor electrolytes, renal function, and BNP level. Most patients referred to the infusion center will have a formal one-on-one diet education session with our registered heart failure dietician. The Heart Failure team will work in conjunction with the patient’s cardiology and primary care teams.

Q: Do patients need to be seen by one of the Heart Failure Physicians before being referred to the Bridge-Infusion Program?
A: No, however, some referring providers prefer that their patients be evaluated specifically by a heart failure specialized physician in addition to the evaluation and management in the Bridge-Infusion Program with our heart failure board certified nurses and advanced practice providers. (Referring providers should indicate this on the Ambulatory Referral to Heart Failure Epic Order or by phone.)

Q: When is the Bridge-Infusion center open?
A: We are open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Q: How can I contact the Bridge-Infusion Program?
A: Our office number is 860.972.1212; our fax number is 860.545.3269.



Meet our Heart Failure Specialists

Jennifer Bell

 

Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant

Medical Group Hartford HealthCare Heart & Vascular Institute
Hartford, CT 06106
More Locations
Bridgeport, CT 06606
Jason Gluck

 

Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant

Medical Group Hartford HealthCare Heart & Vascular Institute at Hartford Hospital
Hartford, CT 06106
More Locations
Hartford, CT 06106
John Granquist

 

Cardiovascular Medicine

Consulting Cardiologists, PC
Hartford, CT 06106
More Locations
Glastonbury, CT 06033
Windsor, CT 06095
Nicole Huhn

 

Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant

Medical Group Hartford Hospital Transplant & Comprehensive Liver Center
Hartford, CT 06106
Abhishek Jaiswal

 

Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant

Medical Group Hartford HealthCare Heart & Vascular Institute at Hartford Hospital
Hartford, CT 06106
More Locations
Bridgeport, CT 06606
Hartford, CT 06106
Hamden, CT 06517
Fairfield, CT 06824
Lynn O'Bara

 

Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant

Medical Group Hartford Hospital Department of Cardiology
Hartford, CT 06106
Kevin Tally

 

Cardiovascular Medicine

Consulting Cardiologists, PC
Hartford, CT 06106
More Locations
Glastonbury, CT 06033
West Hartford, CT 06110
Peter Vlismas

 

Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant

Medical Group Hartford HealthCare Heart & Vascular Institute
Hartford, CT 06106
More Locations
Bridgeport, CT 06606

Our Heart Failure Infusion Program Locations: