New group's goal: 95% of heart patients get recommended care

The coalition will push hospitals and physicians to give cardiac patients the right treatment at the right time.

By Kevin B. O’Reilly — Posted July 17, 2006

Print  |   Email  |   Respond  |   Reprints  |   Like Facebook  |   Share Twitter  |   Tweet Linkedin

Nearly all of the 2 million patients annually hospitalized for heart attacks and heart failure will receive cardiac care aligned with national standards, if a new coalition of 29 government, hospital, physician and research groups is successful.

The Alliance for Cardiac Care Excellence announced in June that it wants, by the end of the year, to see 95% of heart-attack and heart-failure patients receiving a seven-measure core set of care that the National Quality Forum and the Hospital Quality Alliance endorsed. About 85% of eligible patients now receive that care, which includes giving patients aspirin and beta-blockers upon arrival and prescribing those medications at discharge.

By the end of 2007, the new group aims to hit the 95% figure on a 12-measure set of cardiac care protocols that includes other evidence-based interventions, such as delivering a percutaneous coronary intervention to eligible heart-attack patients within 120 minutes of hospital arrival. The coalition counts the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the American Hospital Assn., the Institute for Healthcare Improvement and the American College of Cardiology as members.

To achieve the goals, member groups will send common messages about appropriate cardiac care to physicians and hospitals, support public reporting on compliance with the measures and help struggling hospitals implement changes. It also will work to remove any regulatory or payment barriers.

"Working together, we can successfully address the challenges that health systems sometimes face in providing the best patient care possible," AHRQ director Carolyn M. Clancy, MD, said in a statement.

Back to top

External links

Alliance for Cardiac Care Excellence (link)

Back to top



Read story

Confronting bias against obese patients

Medical educators are starting to raise awareness about how weight-related stigma can impair patient-physician communication and the treatment of obesity. Read story

Read story


American Medical News is ceasing publication after 55 years of serving physicians by keeping them informed of their rapidly changing profession. Read story

Read story

Policing medical practice employees after work

Doctors can try to regulate staff actions outside the office, but they must watch what they try to stamp out and how they do it. Read story

Read story

Diabetes prevention: Set on a course for lifestyle change

The YMCA's evidence-based program is helping prediabetic patients eat right, get active and lose weight. Read story

Read story

Medicaid's muddled preventive care picture

The health system reform law promises no-cost coverage of a lengthy list of screenings and other prevention services, but some beneficiaries still might miss out. Read story

Read story

How to get tax breaks for your medical practice

Federal, state and local governments offer doctors incentives because practices are recognized as economic engines. But physicians must know how and where to find them. Read story

Read story

Advance pay ACOs: A down payment on Medicare's future

Accountable care organizations that pay doctors up-front bring practice improvements, but it's unclear yet if program actuaries will see a return on investment. Read story

Read story

Physician liability: Your team, your legal risk

When health care team members drop the ball, it's often doctors who end up in court. How can physicians improve such care and avoid risks? Read story

  • Stay informed
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • RSS
  • LinkedIn