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Arkansas Heart Attack Registry starts this month
Little Rock, Ark. – Twenty-three hospitals have joined the Arkansas Heart Attack Registry (AHAR) in a collaborative effort to reduce the impact of heart attacks on Arkansans.
In 2016, Arkansas ranked number one in the nation for highest heart attack death rate, with 2,922 deaths. The American Heart Association reports that every 40 seconds someone suffers a heart attack.
“What gets measured gets improved. This registry is a unique opportunity to address a leading cause of death and disability in Arkansas,” said Dr. Appathurai Balamurugan, State Chronic Disease Director and Medical Director for the Chronic Disease Branch at the Arkansas Department of Health.
The AHAR, which is starting September 2018, is the ADH’s surveillance and quality improvement program for acute coronary syndrome. The primary goal of the AHAR is to perform surveillance, monitor care performance, and provide education and quality improvement assistance to improve heart attack patient care and outcomes. Oversight for the AHAR is provided by the STEMI (ST-Elevation Myocardial Infarction) Advisory Council, a group of Arkansas-based healthcare professionals including interventional cardiologists, emergency medical service professionals (EMT’s and paramedics), nurses and public health officials. A STEMI is a very serious type of heart attack that occurs when a major artery is blocked.
“This registry is a tool to help us understand what is working well and what needs to improve,” said Greg Brown, Branch Chief of Trauma, Stroke and STEMI. “We appreciate the participating hospitals’ dedication to excellence in heart attack patient care.”
Hospitals participating in the AHAR include:
- Arkansas Heart Hospital
- Baptist Health Medical Center - Conway
- Baptist Health Medical Center - Little Rock
- Baptist Health Medical Center - North Little Rock
- Baxter Regional Medical Center
- CHI St. Vincent Hot Springs
- CHI St. Vincent Infirmary
- CHI St. Vincent North
- Conway Regional Medical Center
- Jefferson Regional Medical Center
- Medical Center of South Arkansas
- Mercy Hospital Fort Smith
- Mercy Hospital Northwest Arkansas
- Methodist University Hospital (Tennessee)
- National Park Medical Center
- NEA Baptist Memorial Hospital
- St. Bernards Medical Center
- Saline Memorial Hospital
- Sparks Regional Medical Center
- Unity Health - White County Medical Center
- University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
- Washington Regional Medical Center
- White River Medical Center
If a hospital would like to participate in the AHAR, they can contact the ADH’s Stroke and STEMI Section at 501-614-5232.
It is critical to know the signs and act in time when heart attack is suspected. The American Heart Association emphasizes the importance of dialing 911 if any of these signs are recognized:
- Chest discomfort. Most heart attacks involve discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes – or it may go away and then return. It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.
- Discomfort in other areas of the upper body. Symptoms can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
- Shortness of breath. This can occur with or without chest discomfort.
- Other signs. Other possible signs include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.
Visit www.healthy.arkansas.gov for more information on heart attack.