AF Association Healthcare Pioneers Report
Showcasing Best Practice In AF
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Centres of Excellence
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Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common, sustained heart rhythm disturbance (arrhythmia). About 2% of the general population have AF, and at least one in four adults over 40 years old will develop AF in their lifetime. It can cause distressing symptoms, or it may remain silent, with the patient being completely unaware of the potentially dangerous arrhythmia that has developed. This is one of the main reasons that so many people have undiagnosed AF — in excess of 30% of people with AF are unaware that they have a potentially dangerous arrhythmia.
Irrespective of symptoms, AF is associated with severe complications. Untreated, or poorly managed people with AF are at increased risk of AF-related stroke, sudden cardiovascular death, heart failure, dementia, lesser degrees of cognitive dysfunction, and frequent hospital admissions. However, with early detection and appropriate management, these risks can be substantially reduced. For this reason, the AF Association established the DETECT, PROTECT, CORRECT, PERFECT strategy.
Furthermore, the AF Association publishes the annual AF Healthcare Pioneers report — a collection of case studies — to showcase innovative and positive advances in the way that diagnosis, anticoagulation therapy, antiarrhythmic and rate control treatments for AF have been established in leading centres.
An international panel of judges, including Professor John Camm and Professor Hugh Calkins, select which case studies to include in the report. They look at originality, completion, patient involvement and implications for healthcare. The winning case studies will be acknowledged and promoted, with the winning teams receiving a certificate and the option to present their work at an AF Association International AF Meeting. Additionally, their centre will be listed as a Centre of Excellence.
The report was published and the winners announced during Global AF Aware Week, as a model of best practice that other centres can adapt to improve their own practice in the management of patients with AF.
*The Detect, Protect, Correct, and Perfect (DPCP) logo and the wording “DETECT AF with a simple Pulse Check, PROTECT against AF-related stroke using anti-coagulation therapy (not aspirin), CORRECT the irregular rhythm with access to appropriate treatment, PERFECT the patient care pathway” are trademarked to the Atrial Fibrillation Association in the UK.