Network established to boost heart disease treatment

A network for faster cardiovascular disease treatment was set up yesterday to speed up emergency patient treatment and ensure better long-term patient intervention and management.

Shanghai Chest Hospital yesterday teamed up with five neighborhood health centers to set up a classified network which will offer patients quicker transfer and treatment services under emergency cardiac situations.

Under the network, electrocardiogram results of patients at neighborhood health centers will be sent to Shanghai Chest Hospital, a leading hospital in cardiovascular disease, from time to time. Those detected to require urgent treatment will be transferred to the leading hospital through a green channel immediately.

According to international protocol for the treatment of patients with urgent myocardial infarction, the time from the first medical contact to the blocked blood vessels being cleared should be limited to within 120 minutes. The quicker the better for patients' survival and the effect of treatment, doctors from Shanghai Chest Hospital said.

During trial over the past six months, the network has transferred and treated about 20 patients. In a typical case it only took 96 minutes from the time a patient visited the neighborhood health center complaining of discomfort, to receiving emergency surgery at Shanghai Chest Hospital.

“In addition to offering green channels for patient transfer and treatment, the network is to identity high-risk patients in time for early intervention, and those receiving surgery will be transferred back to grassroots hospitals for rehabilitation and further follow-up treatment,” said Dr Fang Weiyi from Shanghai Chest Hospital. “We also offer training for general physicians at neighborhood health centers to improve their abilities in cardiovascular disease prevention and control.”

There are 290 million Chinese suffering from cardiovascular diseases, which has become the top killer in the nation.


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