The guidance, ‘Follow Your Heart: optimal care after a heart attack for you and your patients', has been published in the British Journal of Cardiology. It was developed by primary and secondary care clinicians to consolidate existing evidence-based guidance.
The new guidance advises on cardiac rehabilitation and ongoing care, as well as lifestyle modification, therapeutic interventions and communication between secondary and primary care, community services and patients.
East Sussex GP Dr Jonathan Morrell, from Hastings, commented: ‘Post-MI patients are at a much higher risk of having a further cardiovascular event. The guidance provides clarity and consistency for GPs and practice nurses who are tasked with the day-to-day management of these higher risk patients.'
Michaela Nuttall, a cardiovascular nurse specialist at Bromley PCT in Kent, said: ‘Before now, there has often been a disconnect between the information provided to post-MI patients and the clinical guidance for healthcare professionals. By addressing this we hope to maximise the opportunity that each patient has to support his or her own recovery.'
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