To describe clinician screening practices for prior hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, knowledge of future risks associated with hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, barriers and facilitators to referrals for cardiovascular disease risk evaluation in women with prior hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, and variation by clinician- and practice-level characteristics.
We used data from Fall DocStyles 2020, a cross-sectional, web-based panel survey of currently practicing U.S. clinicians. Of 2,231 primary care physicians, obstetrician–gynecologists (ob-gyns), nurse practitioners, and physician assistants invited to participate, 67.3% (n=1,502) completed the survey. We calculated the prevalence of screening, knowledge of future risks, and barriers and facilitators to referrals, and assessed differences by clinician type using χ2 tests. We evaluated associations between clinician- and practice-level characteristics and not screening using a multivariable log-binomial model.
Overall, 73.6% of clinicians screened patients for a history of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy; ob-gyns reported the highest rate of screening (94.8%). Overall, 24.8% of clinicians correctly identified all cardiovascular risks associated with hypertensive disorders of pregnancy listed in the survey. Lack of patient follow-through (51.5%) and patient refusal (33.6%) were the most frequently cited barriers to referral. More referral options (42.9%), patient education materials (36.2%), and professional guidelines (34.1%) were the most frequently cited resources needed to facilitate referrals. In the multivariable model, primary care physicians and nurse practitioners, as well as physician assistants, were more likely than ob-gyns to report not screening (adjusted prevalence ratio 5.54, 95% CI 3.24–9.50, and adjusted prevalence ratio 7.42, 95% CI 4.27–12.88, respectively). Clinicians seeing fewer than 80 patients per week (adjusted prevalence ratio 1.81, 95% CI 1.43–2.28) were more likely to not screen relative to those seeing 110 or more patients per week.
Three quarters of clinicians reported screening for a history of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy; however, only one out of four clinicians correctly identified all of the cardiovascular risks associated with hypertensive disorders of pregnancy listed in the survey.