Given the public health burden of chronic heart failure (CHF) within the community, difficulties in patient access to health services in rural and remote areas, and the relative high morbidity and mortality of this disease, new strategies are urgently required. However, the allocation of health care resources in rural areas makes delivery of nurse based home visits and access to multidisciplinary management especially difficult. One obvious solution is to provide individualised, evidence based telephone support to the rural and remote heart failure patient. This model has not as yet been specifically examined in such a population and Australia is an ideal environment in which to test it. The Chronic Heart failure Assistance by Telephone (CHAT) study is currently assessing such telephone support in 666 patients and 300 general practices throughout rural and remote Australia.