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Table 2 Characteristics of included studies

From: Effectiveness of programs to promote cardiovascular health of Indigenous Australians: a systematic review

Authors, year Study design Strategy focus Intervention Sample and setting Method Outcomes Comments
et al., 2011 [38]
Interrupted time series study (6 years); pre- and post-measures; 6-monthly follow ups pre- (3 years) and post-intervention (3 years) Early identification/ preventative Holistic CVD risk assessment as part of an adult health check Indigenous participants (n = 64); remote primary health care service, Northern Territory Questionnaires/charts review/ investigations Improved delivery of preventive care services; improved medicine prescription; reduction in estimated absolute CVD risk; better and earlier identification of elevated CVD risk. The program led to better and earlier identification of cardiac risk factors as well as generally improved delivery of preventive care services and cardiac treatment
et al.,
2015 [36]
Longitudinal clinical audits of cardiac prevention services; 3 monthly follow-ups for 2 years Preventative Chronic conditions management model Indigenous participants (n = 12,428); remote primary health care services (n = 49), Northern Territory Clinical audit of cardiac prevention services Increased coverage of Indigenous population CVD risk assessment; assessment of modifiable cardiac risk factors); increased appropriate prescription of medication; achievement of clinical targets for risk reduction The program demonstrated ability to reduce cardiac risk factors in rural Indigenous populations. It also enabled follow-up of patients
et al., 2012 [31]
Pragmatic RCT
Follow up 3 monthly (completed: n = 59, lost to follow up: n = 41)
Management/ treatment 12-week exercise and nutrition program Indigenous participants (intervention n = 51, control n = 49);
metropolitan area, South Australia
Implementation of a structured exercise program Reduction in weight and BMI Low attendance but intervention had positive effects. Requires understanding the barriers to participation
et al., 2014 [33]
Mixed methods
Pre- and post-program measures
Rehabilitation/ secondary prevention 8-week supervised exercise and educational session - cardiopulmonary rehabilitation and secondary prevention program Indigenous participants (n = 92); Aboriginal community-controlled health services, Tasmania Implemented an exercise and educational program with Indigenous community Increased participation in rehabilitation; positive changes in health behaviours, functional exercise capacity and health related quality of life. Decreased weight, BMI, and waist circumference
Increased 6-min walk test results
Community based interventions have multiple positive impacts
et al., 2008 [34]
Mixed methods
Pre- and post-measures
Management/ treatment A partnership model among key education providers, policy makers, non-government organisations, the local area health service and Aboriginal community controlled organisations Indigenous participants (n = 21); metropolitan Technical and Further Education (TAFE), New South Wales Mixed method evaluation using
questionnaires and semi structured interviews
Participants reported increased confidence in ability to provide CVD service to community and demonstrated enhanced CVD knowledge: post-course test mean score 70% vs pre-course score 42% The model was useful in promoting cardiac knowledge in Aboriginal Health Workers while increasing Aboriginal health knowledge in the mainstream health setting. The model forged partnerships.
et al., 2014 [37]
Pre- and post -evaluation program Rehabilitation/ secondary prevention Working together model of care - (Aboriginal hospital liaison officer and specialist cardiac nurse team) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participants (n = 13); metropolitan tertiary public hospital, Victoria Retrospective audit Increased referral rate (15 to 86%)
and attendance rate (0 to 62%)
The partnership model approach to care coordination and system changes that were implemented led to improved attendance at cardiac rehabilitation in the participating group
et al., 2013 [35]
Mixed methods
Pre- and post-program measures
Rehabilitation Cardiac rehabilitation program; weekly exercise and education sessions Indigenous participants (n = 48); Aboriginal medical services, Western Australia Evaluation of exercise and educational program Decreased weight, BMI, BP, waist girth; improved 6-min walk test Aboriginal Medical Service based cardiac rehabilitation proved to be effective in improving attendance, and cardiac risk factor and health management
et al., 2015 [32]
Parallel arm cluster-randomized controlled trial Management/ treatment Computer-guided quality improvement intervention Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participants (n = 38,725); Australian primary healthcare centres (n = 60 services), New South Wales and Queensland Implementation of computerised screening and management algorithm The intervention was associated with improved overall risk factor measurements There was minimal support required to implement the tool and had positive effects on improving cardiac risk measurement
  1. BMI body mass index, BP blood pressure, CVD cardiovascular disease