New Health Initiative Encourages Black & Latina Women to Demand More from Their Heart Care

Boehringer Ingelheim and Eli Lilly and Company launched Hear Your Heart to address the unmet burden of adverse health outcomes in Black and Latina women due to significant health disparities and inequities in managing heart failures. This new health initiative empowers women of color with heart failure to prioritize their care.

According to the press release by Lilly, despite a similar prevalence of heart failure, women with heart failure have worse outcomes than men. Furthermore, recent data reveals that healthcare professionals were less likely to adhere to guidelines in the diagnosis and treatment of heart failure in women than men, despite no difference in recommendations based on gender. 

This deviation from the recommended guidelines can lead to undertreatment in women. However, for Black and Latina women, the problem goes beyond this. In addition, Black and Latina women were less likely to be admitted to specialized cardiology units, leading to worse outcomes. 

The above realities call for a need for better education and access to improve care. Hear Your Heart came from the need to tackle these notable disparities in heart failure treatment by promoting proactive, ongoing conversations and offering practical steps for women with heart failure, their care partners, and healthcare professionals to help improve outcomes.

“Proactive and comprehensive heart failure care can lead to better patient outcomes not just for the cardiovascular system, but the renal and metabolic systems as well, given they are interconnected,” said Anita Holz, Executive Director, Therapeutic Area Head Cardiometabolism, Clinical Development, and Medical Affairs, Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. “With Hear Your Heart, we are not only providing education and resources to support holistic care, but we are encouraging women with heart failure to reassess their care to determine what areas they can address to put themselves first and feel their best living with the condition.”

In addition to encouraging women living with heart failure to advocate for better care, the initiative calls on healthcare professionals to recognize and embrace their responsibility to provide equitable, quality care. Research corroborates that a lack of representation among healthcare professionals can contribute to health disparity and equity issues.

“We are thinking beyond treatments to engage healthcare professionals in this critical issue and look to arm women living with heart failure with the information they need to ensure they are able to advocate for optimal care.”

The Hear Your Heart program will continue to include programming and resources for healthcare providers and medical students, with Spanish language resources becoming available later in 2022.

Source: Lilly Press Release