Cardiac Alert begins at McKee to improve treatment of heart attacks
LOVELAND, Colo. (June 20, 2011) – McKee Medical Center has instituted a Cardiac Alert program to ensure Loveland area patients experiencing a heart attack get the quality care they need in the shortest time possible.
A Cardiac Alert is a process which allows patients experiencing a heart attack to be taken directly to the catheterization lab bypassing the emergency department. Time is muscle - the faster the artery is open the better the patient outcome.
The CardioVascular Institute of North Colorado at McKee (CVI) works with Thompson Valley Emergency Medical Services to offer a Cardiac Alert program. Paramedics use 12-lead ECG equipment to assess patient conditions in the field. This enables the paramedics to determine whether the patient is having a heart attack and would benefit from cardiac catheterization. From the ambulance, paramedics and hospital emergency services staff can call a Cardiac Alert. This notifies CVI cardiologists and cardiac cath lab staff members to be ready to treat the patient.
Upon arrival at the emergency department, the patient can be moved directly to the cardiac catheterization lab. In a cardiac catheterization, the CVI cardiologist takes pictures of the coronary arteries. If a coronary artery is narrowed or blocked, balloons and stents may be used to open up the arteries and improve blood flow.
Patients who are treated quickly tend to:
- Experience fewer immediate complications from the heart attack
- Have less heart muscle damage
- Are less likely to suffer from long-term heart failure.
The American College of Cardiology has set a benchmark of 90 minutes from the time heart attack patients arrive at the hospital to the time their artery is opened. The Cardiac Alert program at McKee allows this standard to be met and often exceeded.
For more information, contact the CardioVascular Institute of North Colorado at (970) 203-2400 or visit www.bannerhealth.com/cvi.
ABOUT MCKEE MEDICAL CENTER
McKee Medical Center is a fully accredited, private not-for-profit facility with 132 beds. It serves as a community medical center with services including emergency, oncology, heart, orthopedics, inpatient and outpatient surgery, obstetrics, pediatrics, rehabilitation, intensive care, lab and medical imaging.
ABOUT BANNER HEALTH
Based in Phoenix, Banner Health is one of the largest, not-for-profit health care systems in the country. Banner has 23 facilities that offer an array of services including hospital care, home care, hospice care, nursing registries, surgery centers, laboratories, rehabilitation services. Facilities are in seven states -- Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Nebraska, Nevada, and Wyoming. In addition to emergency and medical services, Banner Health medical centers house a variety of specialized services, including heart care, cancer treatment, delivery of high-order multiple births, organ transplants, bone marrow transplants, rehabilitation services, and behavioral health services.
For more information, visit www.BannerHealth.com.