Heart Week awareness campaign:
Taking heart health seriously
Ramsay Health Care has encouraged Australians to take their heart health seriously during Heart Week and
ensure they know their risk factors for heart disease.
National Manager of Clinical Quality and Patient Safety, Dr Bernadette
Eather, said about 42,000 cardiology patients were admitted to Ramsay
Australia’s facilities each year and approximately 39,000 procedures were
performed annually in cardiac catherisation laboratories.
“As Australia’s largest private hospital operator, we partner with the best
clinicians to provide high-quality cardiac services through 20 of our facilities,”
Dr Eather said.
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“Ramsay has a senior doctor advisory panel and a team of cardiologists from
around Australia who provide the organisation with advice around emerging
trends, procedures and best practice in cardiology.”
During Heart Week, many hospitals took part in exciting initiatives,
celebrated milestones, and announced new services and treatments
in the cardiology space.
Strathfield Private Hospital takes team approach
to Heart Week
Strathfield Private Hospital has taken a multidisciplinary approach during Heart Week, conducting
heart health checks, hosting a foyer display, providing free recipes and organising a cardiac education
evening with a focus on patient care and education.
Team members from the cardiac unit, physiotherapists,
dietitian, catering staff and visiting medical officers were
all involved with coordinating the event.
Strathfield Private Hospital is internationally recognised
as a Centre of Excellence for heart patients.
The hospital has been offering highly complex cardiac
surgery for almost 30 years using state-of-the-art facilities
and the latest technologies. It also has an intensive care unit
and around-the-clock referral to cardiothoracic surgeons and
interventional cardiology services.
Cardiothoracic surgeon Dr Matthew Bayfield said: “Staff at
Strathfield Private are highly trained and in many cases have
worked there for 15, 20 years.”
“They’re dedicated to what they do and there’s an excellent
teamwork approach to looking after patients.”
Leading the way in
therapy’ heart study
Greenslopes Private Hospital was the largest trial
site in Australia for a large global study focusing
on high-risk cardiac patients.
‘AUGUSTUS’ is a randomised controlled trial involving
patients who require both anticoagulants (blood thinning
medication) and antiplatelet therapies (used to prevent
blood clots forming in the arteries).
The study was designed to compare two treatments: the
new anticoagulant ‘Apixaban’ versus the old Warfarin.
Researchers specifically focused on non-valvular atrial
fibrillation patients with acute coronary syndrome (ACS) and/
or undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI).
In the trial, atrial fibrillation patients received either
Apixaban or Warfarin, as well as aspirin or matching placebo
on top of their usual post PCI antiplatelet – usually Plavix.
Clinical Cardiologist Associate Professor David Colquhoun
was the Prinicipal Investigator, while Interventional
Cardiologist and Chair of the Cardiology Craft Group,
Dr Paul Watson, provided most of the patients at
Greenslopes Private Hospital.
A/Professor Colquhoun said: “Previously, when a patient
had both atrial fibrillation and unstable angina, which
can lead to a heart attack, we didn’t have concrete
clinical evidence to back up which treatment path was
“What the ‘AUGUSTUS’ trial has done is to clearly show
us that Apixaban is superior to Warfarin in terms of lower
bleeding rates,” A/Professor Colquhoun said.
“Patients using antiplatelet therapies with or without aspirin
had lower rates of major or clinically relevant non-major
bleeding when they were also treated with Apixaban,
compared to those who were also treated with Warfarin.”
“Importantly, patients who had aspirin in addition to their
usual anti-platelet suffered significantly higher rates of
bleeding with no clinical benefit.”
“These findings translate very easily into our current
methods and will play an important role when formulating
treatment pathways for our patients in the future,”
A/Professor Colquhoun said.