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First Chest Pain Center certifications awarded in Middle East region

(NewMediaWire) - March 08, 2023 - DALLAS and DUBAI —Three leading hospitals in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are recognized for excellence in managing the most severe type of heart attack by the American Heart Association® and Emirates Cardiac Society (ECS).  Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the Middle East and North Africa region[1]. As part of reinforcing the American Heart Association’s deep commitment to the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region’s cardiovascular health, Sheikh Khalifa General, in Umm Al Quwain, UAE and Sheikh Khalifa Medical City, in Ajman, UAE have been recognized by the Association and Emirates Cardiac Society (ECS) as Primary Chest Pain Centers. Sheikh Khalifa Specialty Hospital in Ras Al Khaimah, UAE has been recognized as a Comprehensive Chest Pain Center. These certifications are critical elements to create a regional system of care that seeks to save lives by closing the gaps that delay heart attack patients from timely access to appropriate treatments.

The hospitals are the first in the region to receive this certification, which recognizes centers that meet or exceed quality of care measures for people experiencing the most severe type of heart attack, ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI). STEMI occurs when blood flow is completely blocked to a portion of the heart.

The Primary Chest Pain Center certification identifies health care facilities that meet specific criteria for promptly diagnosing heart attacks, providing initial care, stabilizing patients and transporting them to a hospital for more advanced treatment.

The Comprehensive Chest Pain Center Certification identifies healthcare facilities that have the equipment, expertise and facilities to administer percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), a mechanical means of treating heart attack patients, with the goal of treatment occurring within the times specified in the latest chest pain guidelines. These PCI-capable hospitals are called Comprehensive hospitals because they are well-equipped to receive and treat STEMI patients.

“Implementing the latest science-based standards in chest pain and heart attack care has been proven to save lives and improve outcomes – that is how these clinical practices become the standard of care,” said American Heart Association volunteer President Michelle A. Albert, M.D., M.P.H., FAHA, the Walter A. Haas-Lucie Stern endowed chair in Cardiology, professor of medicine and admissions dean at University of California-San Francisco School of Medicine. “Certification from the American Heart Association and Emirates Cardiac Society Primary Chest Pain Center in facilities such as Sheikh Khalifa General and Sheikh Khalifa Medical City, and Comprehensive Chest Pain Center in facilities like Sheikh Khalifa Specialty Hospital, create the opportunity for a larger regional system of care – where multiple hospitals can work together to quickly and appropriately to treat heart attack patients in the region.”

Reviewers found these three hospitals in UAE met or exceeded all required standards. Comprehensive Chest Pain Centers must document and demonstrate how their organization has committed to providing quality care for chest pain patients.

“Worldwide, heart disease remains the leading cause of death — when someone suffers a heart attack, time is critical,” said Dr. AbdulMajeed Al Zubaidi, consultant interventional cardiologist and general secretary of Emirates Cardiac Society. “Hospitals and health care providers need to be prepared to coordinate care quickly and efficiently. We developed Chest Pain Center certification to help hospitals create an integrated and collaborative approach to cardiovascular care to improve outcomes in patients with cardiovascular disease by providing certified care to patients with STEMI and non-STEMI across UAE.”

The American Heart Association and Emirates Cardiac Society overall mission for the certification is for hospitals to strive to provide excellent acute health care services to the community through caring, quality and innovation. Their purpose is to significantly reduce cardiac death in patients by teaching the public to recognize and react to early symptoms of a heart attack, reduce the time it takes to receive life-saving treatment and increase the accuracy and effectiveness of treatment.

Learn more about Chest Pain Center certification from the American Heart Association and Emirates Cardiac Society.

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About the American Heart Association

The American Heart Association is a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. We are dedicated to ensuring equitable health in all communities. Through collaboration with numerous organizations, and powered by millions of volunteers, we fund innovative research, advocate for the public’s health and share lifesaving resources. The Dallas-based organization has been a leading source of health information for nearly a century. Follow the American Heart Association on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram.


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