Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami Beach, Florida, is in the top three hospitals in the southeast region of the United States, and No. 1 in Florida, for heart attack survival according to the most recent data released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Hospital Compare, which compared data from 4,786 hospitals across the country.
The high heart attack survival rate is a result of the partnership between Mount Sinai and the City of Miami Beach. Through a collaborative effort that includes the city’s Public Safety Communications Unit (911 Center), Fire Rescue and well-trained paramedics, who provide pre-hospital care, there exists a seamless, highly organized system of care for heart attack patients from the moment they call 911, to the time they are brought to the Mount Sinai emergency room and, ultimately, reach the cardiac catheterization lab to open the coronary artery.
“As the only hospital and emergency room in Miami Beach, we are a vital part of the safety net of our community,” says Steve Sonenreich, Mount Sinai President and CEO. “At our Harvey R. Chaplin Family Stroke and Chest Pain Center, we are able to treat heart attacks quickly and efficiently utilizing a high reliability organization model in which every person, from receptionist to interventionist, is trained and ready to deliver prompt, lifesaving care.”
Each year, more than 250,000 people experience a severe heart attack, also known as a ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), which is caused by a complete blockage of blood flow to a coronary artery in the heart. It is critical to open the blocked vessel so that blood flow can be restored to the heart as quickly as possible. Mount Sinai’s collaboration with the Miami Beach Fire-Rescue Department has both entities working together to perfect protocols and hasten treatment. Paramedics can perform an electrocardiogram, which can detect a heart attack, and relay that information directly to Mount Sinai’s emergency room. This prompts the staff to prepare to treat the patient the moment the rescue unit arrives.
The national goal in heart attack treatment to restore blood flow to the heart is less than 120 minutes from the moment an ambulance picks up the patient, and 90 minutes from arriving at the hospital. Mount Sinai and the Miami Beach Fire-Rescue Department have surpassed both goals by being able to restore blood flow within 90 minutes from the field, and 60 minutes upon hospital arrival, respectively.
“Access to timely emergency care is of utmost importance to our community,” said City of Miami Beach Mayor Phillip Levine. “Miami Beach cannot be a great city without maintaining a world-class emergency response team and medical center to serve its residents and visitors.”
“Anyone who suspects they are having a heart attack should call 911 immediately,” says Dr. David Farcy, Chairman of Mount Sinai’s Emergency Medicine Department. “Heart attack diagnosis and treatment can begin before you even reach the hospital, and it’s a very effective way to reduce the time it takes to get you the treatment you need.”
Whereas most other hospitals have an average of three STEMI team members, Mount Sinai’s team consists of seven members, including two nurses, three technicians, one attending physician and one cardiology fellow. The entire team assembles within 20 to 40 minutes upon notification of a heart attack patient arriving at the hospital.
In addition, the Miami Beach Fire Department was recently recognized by the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline with the EMS Silver Award, which recognizes emergency responders for their effort in improving STEMI systems of care and improving the quality of life for severe heart attack patients.
Signs and symptoms of a heart attack can include:
• Discomfort, pressure, heaviness, or pain in the chest, arm or below the breastbone.
• Discomfort radiating to the back, jaw, throat or arm.
• Fullness, indigestion, or choking feeling (may feel like heartburn).
• Sweating, nausea, vomiting or dizziness.
• Extreme weakness, anxiety or shortness of breath.
• Rapid or irregular heartbeats.
If you suspect that you or someone you know may be having a heart attack, DO NOT DELAY. Calling 911 for immediate treatment of a heart attack can help lessen the amount of damage to the heart and, ultimately, save a life.
For more information about Mount Sinai Medical Center, visit www.msmc.com or call 305-674 CARE (2273).
*Sources: CMS Hospital Compare, July 2015.