Welcome to the VA Hypertension Spaced-Education Game
Many patients with high blood pressure (BP) do not have anti-hypertensive medications appropriately intensified at clinician visits. In our randomized trial of primary care clinicians in the northeastern Veterans Affairs hospital system, we found that this online spaced-education (SE) game improved clinicians’ knowledge of evidence-based treatment of hypertension and generated a modest but significant improvement in time to BP target among their hypertensive patients.
Structure of the Game
Educational content consists of 32 validated multiple-choice questions with explanations on hypertension management. Participants are e-mailed one question every 3 days. Adaptive game mechanics re-sent questions in 12 or 24 days if answered incorrectly or correctly, respectively. Clinicians retire questions by answering each correctly twice consecutively. The goal of the SE game is to retire all 32 questions.
Educational content was developed based on a consensus of clinical practice guideline (CPG) recommendations for hypertension management, including:
1. Chobanian AV, Bakris GL, Black HR, Cushman WC, Green LA, Izzo JL, Jr., Jones DW, Materson BJ, Oparil S, Wright JT, Jr. and Roccella EJ. Seventh report of the Joint National Committee on Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Pressure. Hypertension. 2003;42:1206-52.
2. Management of Hypertension in the Primary Care Setting Working Group. Veterans Affairs / Department of Defense Clinical Practice Guideline for Diagnosis and Management of Hypertension in the Primary Care Setting. 2004. Retrieved May 7 2014, from http://www.healthquality.va.gov/hypertension/htn04_pdf1.pdf
3. Mancia G, De Backer G, Dominiczak A, Cifkova R, Fagard R, Germano G, Grassi G, Heagerty AM, Kjeldsen SE, Laurent S, Narkiewicz K, Ruilope L, Rynkiewicz A, Schmieder RE, Boudier HA, Zanchetti A, Vahanian A, Camm J, De Caterina R, Dean V, Dickstein K, Filippatos G, Funck-Brentano C, Hellemans I, Kristensen SD, McGregor K, Sechtem U, Silber S, Tendera M, Widimsky P, Zamorano JL, Erdine S, Kiowski W, Agabiti-Rosei E, Ambrosioni E, Lindholm LH, Viigimaa M, Adamopoulos S, Agabiti-Rosei E, Ambrosioni E, Bertomeu V, Clement D, Erdine S, Farsang C, Gaita D, Lip G, Mallion JM, Manolis AJ, Nilsson PM, O'Brien E, Ponikowski P, Redon J, Ruschitzka F, Tamargo J, van Zwieten P, Waeber B and Williams B. 2007 Guidelines for the Management of Arterial Hypertension: The Task Force for the Management of Arterial Hypertension of the European Society of Hypertension (ESH) and of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC). J Hypertens. 2007;25:1105-87.
Anyone with an interest in the spaced-education game