Percent of Heart Attack Patients Given PCI within 90 Minutes of Hospital Arrival
Why Is This Important?
The heart is a muscle that gets oxygen through blood vessels. Sometimes blood clots can block these blood vessels, and the heart cannot get enough oxygen. This can cause a heart attack. A percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) is performed by a doctor to open the blockage and increase blood flow in blocked blood vessels. Improving blood flow to the heart as quickly as possible lessens the damage to the heart muscle. It also can increase the chances of surviving a heart attack. There are three procedures commonly described by the term PCI. These procedures all involve a catheter (a flexible tube) that is inserted, often through the leg, and guided through the blood vessels to the blockage. They are angioplasty (a balloon is inflated to open the blood vessel), stenting (a small wire tube called a stent is placed in the blood vessel to hold it open) and atherectomy (a blade or laser cuts through and removes the blockage).
About This Graph
PCI is among the most effective ways to open blocked blood vessels and help prevent further heart muscle damage. National standards call for PCI to be initiated within 90 minutes of a heart attack patient arriving at the hospital. The graph below indicates how well UMass Memorial Medical Center meets this standard as compared to other Massachusetts and U.S. hospitals. Higher percentages indicate better care. (Graph data: Jan 2011 - Dec 2011.)
How Are We Doing?
While we have consistently achieved a level of performance above our peers nationally as well as statewide, our goal is to reach 100 percent in this measure for all patients at all times. To that end, we continue to monitor our care to identify any incidences where we did not meet the standard. Every incidence when we do not meet the standard is reviewed with a multidisciplinary team in order to identify barriers to care and implement processes to help us improve. Results are updated quarterly in order to provide the most up-to-date information.