Bupa Australia

Melbourne, Australia

Bupa Australia

Melbourne, Australia

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McGrady M.,Monash University | Reid C.M.,Monash University | Shiel L.,Monash University | Wolfe R.,Monash University | And 5 more authors.
European Journal of Heart Failure | Year: 2013

AimsImpaired diastolic function is associated with increased morbidity and mortality, but antecedents and predictors of progression to heart failure (HF) are not well understood. We examined associations between NT-proBNP, HF risk factors, and diastolic function in a population at high risk for incident HF.Methods and resultsA total of 3550 subjects at high risk for incident HF (≥60 years plus ≥1 HF risk factor), but without pre-existing HF or LV dysfunction were recruited. Participants at highest risk (n = 664) (NT-proBNP in the highest quintile >254 pg/mL) underwent echocardiography. Moderate or severe diastolic dysfunction was observed in 25% [95% confidence interval (CI) 21-29%] of participants. Age (P = 0.001), male gender (P = 0.03), diabetes (P = 0.03), and NT-proBNP (P = 0.002) were associated with severity of diastolic dysfunction after adjustment for HF risk factors and LVEF. In regression analysis, log-transformed NT-proBNP was also associated with LV mass index (P = 0.05), left atrial size (P < 0.0001), and Doppler ratio of the mitral valve E/e' (P = 0.001). Multiple HF risk factors were present in the majority of participants (>70%), but no association was observed between diastolic dysfunction and the number of risk factors reported (P = 0.3). ConclusionDiastolic dysfunction was observed in one in four of these high risk subjects (≥ 60 years, HF risk factor, NT-proBNP >254 pg/mL). NT-proBNP, age and diabetes were strongly associated with severity of diastolic dysfunction, whereas other HF risk factors and LVEF were not. More targeted surveillance using a combination of risk factors and biomarkers may improve identification of those at great risk of incident HF. All rights reserved. © 2013 The Author.


Dunford E.,George Institute for Global Health | Dunford E.,University of Sydney | Trevena H.,George Institute for Global Health | Trevena H.,University of Sydney | And 9 more authors.
Journal of Medical Internet Research | Year: 2014

Background: Front-of-pack nutrition labeling (FoPL) schemes can help consumers understand the nutritional content of foods and may aid healthier food choices. However, most packaged foods in Australia carry no easily interpretable FoPL, and no standard FoPL system has yet been mandated. About two thirds of Australians now own a smartphone. Objective: We sought to develop a mobile phone app that would provide consumers with easy-to-understand nutrition information and support the selection of healthier choices when shopping for food. Methods: An existing branded food database including 17,000 Australian packaged foods underpinned the project. An iterative process of development, review, and testing was undertaken to define a user interface that could deliver nutritional information. A parallel process identified the best approach to rank foods based on nutritional content, so that healthier alternative products could be recommended. Results: Barcode scanning technology was identified as the optimal mechanism for interaction of the mobile phone with the food database. Traffic light labels were chosen as the preferred format for presenting nutritional information, and the Food Standards Australia New Zealand nutrient profiling method as the best strategy for identifying healthier products. The resulting FoodSwitch mobile phone app was launched in Australia in January 2012 and was downloaded by about 400,000 users in the first 18 months. FoodSwitch has maintained a 4-plus star rating, and more than 2000 users have provided feedback about the functionality. Nutritional information for more than 30,000 additional products has been obtained from users through a crowdsourcing function integrated within the app. Conclusions: FoodSwitch has empowered Australian consumers seeking to make better food choices. In parallel, the huge volume of crowdsourced data has provided a novel means for low-cost, real-time tracking of the nutritional composition of Australian foods. There appears to be significant opportunity for this approach in many other countries. ©Elizabeth Dunford, Helen Trevena, Chester Goodsell, Ka Hung Ng, Jacqui Webster, Audra Millis, Stan Goldstein, Orla Hugueniot, Bruce Neal.


Campbell D.J.,St. Vincent's Institute | Campbell D.J.,University of Melbourne | Mcgrady M.,Monash University | Prior D.L.,St Vincents Health | And 9 more authors.
Internal Medicine Journal | Year: 2013

Background: A significant proportion of individuals taking antihypertensive therapies fail to achieve blood pressures <140/90mmHg. In order to develop strategies for improved treatment of blood pressure, we examined the association of blood pressure control with antihypertensive therapies and clinical and lifestyle factors in a cohort of adults at increased cardiovascular risk. Methods: A cross-sectional study of 3994 adults from Melbourne and Shepparton, Australia enrolled in the SCReening Evaluation of the Evolution of New Heart Failure (SCREEN-HF) study. Inclusion criteria were age ≥60 years with one or more of self-reported ischaemic or other heart disease, atrial fibrillation, cerebrovascular disease, renal impairment or treatment for hypertension or diabetes for ≥2 years. Exclusion criteria were known heart failure or cardiac abnormality on echocardiography or other imaging. The main outcome measures were the proportion of participants receiving antihypertensive therapy with blood pressures ≥140/90mmHg and the association of blood pressure control with antihypertensive therapies and clinical and lifestyle factors. Results: Of 3623 participants (1975 men and 1648 women) receiving antihypertensive therapy, 1867 (52%) had blood pressures ≥140/90mmHg. Of these 1867 participants, 1483 (79%) were receiving only one or two antihypertensive drug classes. Blood pressures ≥140/90mmHg were associated with increased age, male sex, waist circumference and log amino-terminal-pro-B-type natriuretic peptide levels. Conclusions: Most individuals with treated blood pressures above target receive only one or two antihypertensive drug classes. Prescribing additional antihypertensive drug classes and lifestyle modification may improve blood pressure control in this population of individuals at increased cardiovascular risk. © 2012 The Authors. Internal Medicine Journal © 2012 Royal Australasian College of Physicians.


Byrnes J.,Griffith University | Carrington M.,Australian Catholic University | Chan Y.-K.,Australian Catholic University | Pollicino C.,Bupa Australia | And 3 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2015

The aim of this study is to consider the cost-effectiveness of a nurse-led, home-based intervention (HBI) in cardiac patients with private health insurance compared to usual post-discharge care. A within trial analysis of the Young@Heart multicentre, randomized controlled trial along with a micro-simulation decision analytical model was conducted to estimate the incremental costs and quality adjusted life years associated with the home based intervention compared to usual care. For the micro-simulation model, future costs, from the perspective of the funder, and effects are estimated over a twenty-year time horizon. An Incremental Cost-Effectiveness Ratio, along with Incremental Net Monetary Benefit, is evaluated using a willingness to pay threshold of $50,000 per quality adjusted life year. Sub-group analyses are conducted for men and women across three age groups separately. Costs and benefits that arise in the future are discounted at five percent per annum. Overall, home based intervention for secondary prevention in patients with chronic heart disease identified in the Australian private health care sector is not cost-effective. The estimated within trial incremental net monetary benefit is -$3,116 [95%CI: -11,145, $4,914]; indicating that the costs outweigh the benefits. However, for males and in particular males aged 75 years and above, home based intervention indicated a potential to reduce health care costs when compared to usual care (within trial: -$10,416 [95%CI: -$26,745, $5,913]; modelled analysis: -$1,980 [95%CI: -$22,843, $14,863]). This work provides a crucial impetus for future research to understand for whom disease management programs are likely to benefit most. © 2015 Byrnes et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

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