Heart attack treatment in Norfolk is faster

Treatment for patients in Norfolk with a heart attack is better than the England average and more people than ever before are receiving the gold standard treatment of primary angioplasty.

The latest MINAP (Myocardial Ischaemia National Audit Project) audit published this month shows that in England between April 2010 and March 2011, the number of patients receiving primary angioplasty rose to 90%.

And the report shows that the Norfolk Heart Attack Centre at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital achieved:

  • 96% of patients getting primary angioplasty within 90 minutes of arriving at hospital (door to balloon time) versus 90% nationally
  • 86% of patients had angioplasty within 150 minutes of a 999 call (call to balloon time) versus 81% nationally
  • 100% of non-ST elevation myocardial infarction patients were seen by a cardiologist versus 91% nationally

Dr Tim Gilbert, clinical director of Cardiology and a consultant interventional cardiologist at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, agreed that tremendous progress has been made in delivering the best possible care to heart attack patients.

Dr Gilbert said: “The Norfolk Heart Attack Centre is the result of a considerable amount of hard work and dedication by the Cardiology team but would not have been possible without the fundraising efforts of patients, relatives, staff and charities throughout the county who raised money for the Balloons For Hearts Appeal.

This year’s MINAP results showed that 90% of eligible patients in England, 68% in Wales and 87% in Belfast were treated with primary angioplasty within 90 minutes of arrival at the heart attack centre.

The report’s authors said that 11 years since the start of the national clinical audit for the management of heart attack, most patients in the UK now have primary angioplasty (the damaged artery opened with a balloon catheter) rather than receive clot-busting drugs.

The MINAP audit is commissioned by the Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership and run by the National Institute for Cardiovascular Outcomes Research, part of the National Centre for Cardiovascular disease Prevention and Outcomes within the UCL Institute of Cardiovascular Science.

Heart attack is common and remains a major cause of death and ill health in the UK, but good treatment coupled with cardiac rehabilitation helps towards full recovery.

Primary angioplasty is the preferred treatment for heart attack if it can be provided promptly.

There has been a year on year fall in the percentage of patients with heart attack that die within 30 days of admission to hospital. The MINAP audit also measures the time from arrival at hospital to receiving treatment, and the time from calling for professional help.

Dr Clive Weston, clinical director of MINAP, said: “During the past decade, MINAP has documented major changes in the care provided to people who suffer heart attack.

“What has not changed in that time is the commitment of individual clinicians, managers and administrators who, through their participation in MINAP, continue to promote the values of national clinical audit – to compare their performance against nationally-agreed best practice, and so to assure and enhance the quality of that care. The remarkable improvement in survival after heart attack bears testimony to their efforts.”

Monday 19th of September 2011 10:00:06 AM