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Hospitals Participating in Get With The Guidelines(SM) Program Follow Heart Attack Treatment Guidelines Better Than Others
Date:9/8/2008

Tens of thousands of heart attack patients could benefit from similar improvements

DALLAS, Sept. 8 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- An Archives of Internal Medicine article published today, "An organized approach to improvement in guideline adherence for acute myocardial infarction," presented the first head-to-head comparison of quality medical care provided by Get With The Guidelines(SM)-Coronary Artery Disease (GWTG-CAD) hospitals vs. other US hospitals not participating in GWTG-CAD. Participation in GWTG was independently associated with improvements in guidelines-based care.

"Despite having a wealth of research providing a solid blueprint for treating cardiovascular disease, gaps, variations, and disparities in the use of evidence based therapies remain," said Gregg C. Fonarow, M.D., FACC, FAHA, chairman of the Get With the Guidelines Steering Committee. "Get With The Guidelines helps address challenges in guidelines adherence by helping health care providers navigate through the blueprint, giving them a way to track their progress in real time, so patients receive the quality care they should. This study demonstrates that Get With The Guidelines works."

This study used hospital data from Hospital Compare, an online database created by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Department of Health and Human Services. It compared eight individual quality-of-care measures and two composite scores in 223 GWTG-CAD hospitals and 3407 non-GWTG-CAD hospitals.

These quality measures included aspirin on admission, aspirin use at discharge, beta-blocker use on admission, beta-blocker use at discharge, ACE inhibitor use at discharge, tobacco cessation counseling at discharge, administration of thrombolytic agents within 30 minutes and PCI within 120 minutes.

The two composite scores include the Hospital Compare score which includes all eight quality measures and the GWTG-CAD composite, which uses four of the eight.


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SOURCE American Heart Association
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