Every year, almost 250,000 people in the U.S. experience ST-Elevation Myocardial Infarction (STEMI)—the deadliest type of heart attack—where one of the heart’s major arteries is blocked. Unfortunately, a significant number of STEMI victims don't receive prompt treatment to restore blood flow. Worse yet, 30 percent of victims don't receive treatment at all.1
There is a direct relationship between the amount of time an artery is blocked, the severity of the heart attack, and odds of survival. In fact, clinicians have an expression that “time is muscle” to express the importance of early treatment of STEMI victims, whether by using “clot-busting” drugs (thrombolytics), percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) in a cardiac catheterization lab (angioplasty or stenting), or coronary artery bypass graft (CABG — aka “cabbage”), a type of open heart surgery.
“Code STEMI” is a term used in many EMS systems and emergency departments meaning that a patient experiencing an STEMI has been identified and that caregivers are formally requesting that a life-saving team and equipment be assembled immediately. This can mean calling in the cardiologist and cath lab personnel from home on nights, weekends and holidays while the STEMI patient is still in the field with EMS, and can determine where and how a patient is routed for treatment.
The Code STEMI web series will examine model regional STEMI systems of care that have demonstrated success in improving patient outcomes. The series will span the STEMI system of care continuum – focusing on the medical directors, doctors, coordinators, fire/EMS providers, and patients – to share their stories and engage viewers with thought-provoking, multi-platform content aimed at educating and entertaining viewers.
Since every STEMI system is unique and no “one size fits all” approach exists, the series will examine two systems—one rural and one urban—as well as include interviews with of some of the leading experts on cardiovascular care, sharing real-world examples of pre-hospital and hospital teams working together to establish high-performing systems to improve STEMI patient outcomes and help save lives.
Physio-Control is pleased to partner with Setla Film Productions, First Responders Network, and series host, Tom Bouthillet, editor-in-chief of the EMS 12-Lead blog, to make the Code STEMI web series a reality.
Behind-the-scenes pre-production clips can be seen prior to series’ release at: www.firstrespondersnetwork.com/codestemi/. To sign-up to receive email updates on the Code STEMI web series’ launch, please submit your email address here.
For more information on how Physio-Control solutions can play a role in improving STEMI systems of care, please visit our System of Care page.
1 American Heart Association website February 2012