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UK access to primary angioplasty services is still highly variable

BMJ 2011; 343 doi: (Published 02 September 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;343:d5508
  1. Caroline White
  1. 1London

Most heart attack patients in the UK now receive the preferred treatment for their damaged arteries and undergo primary angioplasty rather than thrombolysis, shows a national clinical audit. But access to these services is still highly variable, the annual audit shows.

Primary angioplasty is the preferred treatment for myocardial infarction if it can be provided promptly, with patients being taken directly to the catheter laboratory of the nearest heart attack centre rather than to a local hospital or emergency care.

The 10th annual Myocardial Ischaemia National Audit Project (MINAP), which is run by the National Institute for Cardiovascular Outcomes Research (NICOR), includes data from all hospitals and ambulance services in England and Wales that cared for patients with a suspected myocardial …

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