Launch of a National Framework to Address Gaps in Heart Care
The Heart Foundation is calling upon health service planners, policy-makers, politicians and clinicians to address the recommended capabilities outlined in the Australian Acute Coronary Syndrome (ACS) Capability Framework to support the implementation of the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care ACS Clinical Care Standard and provision of evidence-based practice.
The Framework has officially be launched on Saturday 15 August by National Heart Foundation Cardiologist, Professor David Brieger and Dr Karen Page at the 63rd Annual Scientific Meeting of the Cardiac Society of Australia and New Zealand was held from 13 to 16 August 2015 in Melbourne.
The Framework is the first document of its kind in Australia to describe the health system requirements needed to deliver evidence-based care for those experiencing a heart attack, irrespective of where they live in Australia.
Dr Karen Page said in Australia, there is 55,000 heart attacks each year or one every 10 minutes and any people are not receiving the best available care.
“This Framework highlights ways to improve access to best care and potentially save lives.
“Heart muscle can be saved by ensuring people are getting access to the right care when they present with a heart attack,” Dr Page said.
ACS represents a broad spectrum of clinical presentations, from ST elevation myocardial infarction through to an accelerated pattern of angina without evidence of tissue death. These diverse clinical syndromes are known to share the common underlying pathophysiology of atherosclerosis.
Professor Brieger said optimal patient outcomes depend on rapid diagnosis, accurate risk stratification and the effective implementation of proven therapies and treatment strategies.
“There are extensive clinical trial and registry data informing the clinical practice guidelines for the management of ACS.
“And there has been considerable effort across the country to improve the quality of ACS care. However, national clinical audits continue to demonstrate that many people do not receive evidence-based care; this Framework will help to address these issues.
“It’s not good enough that patients are receiving differing care depending on who they are and where they live. We need to ensure that people are provided with as clearer path as possible to avoid repeat heart attacks,” Professor Brieger said.
The intent of the Framework is to provide a set of minimum clinical service recommendations. It is inclusive of ambulance and retrieval services recognising their integral role in the provision of timely ACS care.