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Nurse-led early triage service for chest pain patients

Summary from the author: Linda O'Neill, Acute Coronary Syndromes Specialist Nurse, National Health Service, Tayside, Scotland and British Heart Foundation Healthcare Professionals Project Co-ordinator.

View the corresponding abstract from the 11th Annual Spring Meeting on Cardiovascular Nursing
Cardiovascular Nursing

A long term evaluation study of the impact of a Nurse-led Early Triage service for chest pain patients, aimed at improving the management of those with non ST-elevation acute coronary syndromes.

This observational study was designed in 2 parts NET-1 and NET-2, to evaluate a service development after initial implementation and 5 years later. Data was gathered from medical notes and end points compared between all groups.

Comparison of NET-1 triage and NET-2 triage with NET-1 non-triage (baseline control) demonstrated statistically significant improvements (p <0.05) in the number of chest pain patients having their 12-lead ECG performed within 10 mins of admission and the number of high risk NSTE-ACS patients receiving Clopidogrel and managed in CCU.

Comparison of current triage with current non-triage, revealed a significant difference in median time to receive anti-platelet drug treatment. The study demonstrated the positive impact of nurse-led early triage and that initial benefits have been sustained.