The Heart Partnership
A Lifesaving Partnership
Minutes matter when it comes to saving the lives of people experiencing a ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), a type of heart attack characterized by a blocked blood supply to the heart. At Memorial Hospital of Union County, we make every minute count through The Heart Partnership with The Ohio State University (OSU) Medical Center.
In 2009, Memorial Hospital partnered with OSU Medical Center to form The Heart Partnership for cardiology services, but before that, the two were partnered in saving lives through the STEMI program. This program utilizes a series of steps for rapid diagnosis and treatment of STEMI patients, involving local emergency medical services (EMS) personnel, physicians, and nurses in the Emergency Department (ED) at Memorial Hospital, and their counterparts in the Cardiac Catheterization Lab at OSU Medical Center.
“The STEMI program works seamlessly to get patients the care they need quickly,” says Deb Cramer, RN, Director of the ED at Memorial Hospital. “When EMS personnel pick up a heart attack patient for transport to Memorial Hospital, they can perform an electrocardiogram [EKG] in the ambulance and electronically transmit the data to the ED. Depending on the EKG findings, the Memorial ED staff may initiate a four-way call with MedFlight, an OSU STEMI call line, and an interventional cardiologist at OSU Medical Center as they continue to monitor incoming EKG data. Once the patient arrives in the ED, he or she is quickly prepared for transport to OSU Medical Center by helicopter, weather permitting.”
The staff at OSU Medical Center Cardiac Catheterization Lab are ready and waiting when a STEMI patient arrives. The patient moves directly from the helicopter to the lab where the patient’s artery is reopened by a balloon angioplasty, which involves widening the artery by temporarily inflating a balloon inside it, or the placement of a scaffold-like mesh tube called a stent. The entire process, from arriving at the door of Memorial to receiving the balloon angioplasty, is commonly referred to in the healthcare community as the door-to-door-to-balloon time (D2D2B) time. Memorial’s D2D2B time is faster than the national recommendation and is one of the best in Central Ohio.
“I believe we have one of, if not the, strongest and most successful STEMI partnerships, in the state. We’re thankful to Memorial’s staff for making this collaboration a success,” says Sharon Hammond, RN, BSN, MA, EMT-P, Regional STEMI Coordinator at The Ohio State University Medical Center. For more information about The Heart Partnership, call (937) 578-4343.