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  1. Sousa, Joana Pereira MNSc, RN
  2. Santos, Miguel PhD


This article reports a study aimed at identifying the factors that result in hospital readmissions for patients with heart failure. The high rates of readmission are often due to a lack of knowledge about symptoms and signs of disease progression, and these Portuguese nurses believed that readmissions could be decreased through disease management programs in which patients assumed a more active role in self-care. A study was designed to identify broad categories of problems that lead Portuguese patients with heart failure to be readmitted to hospital. Semistructured interviews were conducted, recorded, and submitted for content analysis, revealing 3 main categories for targeting: health management, behavioral management, and psychological support. This study revealed that patients with heart failure seem to struggle with management of multiple treatment regimens during the long course of their chronic illness. Based on these interviews, authors conclude that a disease management program be tailored expressly for the Portuguese culture and their lifestyle.