Improving hypertension care into the future
Dr Balasooriya and his team at UNSW Sydney are researching the ability of a new educational instrument to improve the management of hypertension.
The instrument, named the Guideline Enhancement Tool (GET), focusses on improving the usability of the National Heart Foundation hypertension guidelines, helping clinicians improve their decision-making skills in the process.
As an expert in medical education, Dr Balasooriya was approached by colleagues who were concerned about the low uptake of clinical guidelines by health practitioners. As Hypertension is one of the most frequently seen problems in general practice but it can still be challenging to manage, the team chose to focus on this topic.
Heart Foundation funding enabled the team to evaluate the impact of the GET within a clinical training program in collaboration with senior general practitioners, cardiologists and GP Synergy (the major general practice training provider in NSW).
Based on this success, the GET is now being adapted to suit final year medical students so that the process can begin at an early stage in the training of future doctors.
It is hoped that using it in early medical training could influence large numbers of future practitioners and therefore have a significant impact on patient outcomes.