Study: Prehospital checklists improve care for stroke and heart attack patients
British research shows standardized treatment before a patient reaches the hospital greatly increases their chances of survival and recovery
Expert Analysis: British example gives hope for standardizing care
As we continue to reboot EMS in the United States, international developments in field care can provide insights as to how we might affect our health care system in positive ways. British EMS providers are working to standardize prehospital approaches to stroke and myocardial infraction care, using standardized checklists and other techniques to improve reliability and timelines of possibly critical interventions. Continue reading: British example gives hope for standardizing care
ENGLAND — The introduction of checklists and better feedback for ambulance crews as part of a national quality improvement project has significantly improved the standard of care for heart attack and stroke patients across England, a major new study has shown.
Between them, heart attack and stroke are the most common cause of death in the UK. There are more than a quarter of a million heart attacks (acute myocardial infarction) in the UK each year and two fifths result in sudden death. There are another 150,000 incidences of stroke annually.
Timely treatment given by ambulance clinicians before a patient reaches hospital is a major factor in their chances of survival and recovery. Paramedics are using standardised packages of assessment and treatment known as ‘care bundles’ for these and other emergency conditions. A care bundle is a series of actions that are clinically recognised to improve a patient’s prognosis.