Addressing Heart Failure in Latinos with Close the Gap Resources


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Heart disease risk is high for U.S. Latinos, data shows.

While most Latinos were aware of their cardiovascular risk factors, less than half of the adults in a study of stroke survivors had healthy blood pressure and cholesterol, and only half had healthy blood sugar levels, according to the American Heart Association.

“Hispanic adults are more likely than white adults to develop heart failure. But Hispanic adults living with heart failure are less likely to get appropriate care and treatment than white adults living with heart failure,” according to a Close the Gap resource.

This emphasizes the importance of targeted prevention programs and culturally relevant resources for Latinos to avoid stroke, heart attack, and other cardiovascular diseases.

That’s where Close the Gap comes in to help!

What is Close the Gap?  

Close the Gap is a health equity initiative from Boston Scientific.

This initiative empowers providers to reduce health inequities that women and people of color often experience in specialty care.

The initiative provides a multitude of resources on a variety of topics including heart failure, peripheral artery disease, and more.

Along with patient resources, Close the Gap also provides resources for healthcare providers and a media toolkit.

“We focus on creating action-oriented initiatives that work within – and extend your health equity efforts – so you can reach and treat more women and people of color with life-threatening conditions,” according to the Close the Gap website.

Latinos and Heart Failure

Despite being thought of having a lower risk, Latinos who are hospitalized for heart failure are younger than whites and have a higher rate of risk factors and higher mortality.

“Heart failure is when your heart can’t pump enough blood to the rest of your body. This often happens because your heart muscle is weak,” according to Close the Gap.

Heart failure can cause additional problems, and ultimately get worse over time.

With this in mind, it’s crucial for Latinos with heart failure to maintain good health by receiving the necessary treatment they may need.

“There’s no cure for heart failure, but you can manage it with lifestyle changes and different types of medicines that can help your heart pump blood,” according to Close the Gap.

Additional forms of treatment can also include implantable cardioverter defibrillators and cardiac resynchronization therapy-defibrillators.

For Latinos, the lack of care and treatment for heart failure may be due in part to bias within the healthcare system.

Close the Gap’s Bilingual Resources

When it comes to underserved patients with heart failure, Close the Gap found that 90% of patients want additional information and 54% of patients want printed take-home materials.

That is why Close the Gap provides resources in English and Spanish.

Ultimately, it’s important for Latinos and their families or caregivers to advocate for themselves through practices like:

  • Learning about different treatment options.
  • Asking your doctor questions to help make sure you’re getting the care you need.
  • Keeping up with medical appointments.
  • Bringing a family member or friend to medical appointments.
  • Requesting services like language assistance, like interpreters or written translations.
  • Asking for recommendations on support group for people with heart conditions.

Patient resources can be found here and healthcare provider resources can be accessed here.

A guide to Close the Gap’s full library of patient resources is available here, including examples of materials such as videos, infographics, and more.

If you are a healthcare professional specializing in cardiovascular disease and interested in utilizing Close the Gap’s resources, please email 

Exploring the Health of Your Community

Heart health contributes to overall health.

But what about the health of your community?

With Salud America’s Health Equity Report Card, you can find Latino-focused local data with interactive maps and comparative gauges, that can help you visualize local inequities in housing, transit, poverty, health care, food, education, and other health topics.

Search your county and compare it to other counties and states across the nation.

Share with results with local leaders and health organizations advocate for change and start important conversations about health disparities that your area may be facing.


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