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Monday 24th October 2016

Heart attack treatment improves

12th July 2007

More patients are getting life-saving treatment quicker after having a heart attack, according to a national survey.


The research revealed that 64% of patients in England and 41% in Wales are given thrombolytic or “clot-busting� drugs within an hour of calling for help.

The data, contained in the annual Myocardial Infarction National Audit Project (MINAP), shows a rise of 6% and 11% respectively in the last year on the delivery of clot-busting drugs, which if given in the first hour significantly improve a heart attack patient’s chance of recovery.

The audit, conducted through the Royal College of Physicians, also showed that overall heart attack death rates have fallen, with 12 fewer deaths per 1,000 heart attacks.

However, the report also stressed there was still room for improvement.

The differences between Wales and England is put down to the more rural nature of areas of Wales, which mean slower response times for ambulance crews, who are now often able to give the thrombolytic treatment before the patient reaches hospital.

The other big change highlighted by the report is the rise in hospitals now offering primary angioplasty for heart attacks.

The director for heart disease, Professor Roger Boyle, said: “Patients with heart attack are being treated in the NHS to a high level of excellence. The remarkable improvements seen each year since the inception of MINAP are a tribute to the many staff across the country who look after heart attack patients, including the ambulance services, A&E departments, cardiac care units as well as the MINAP team itself.�


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