For patients experiencing the most severe type of heart attack — ST elevation myocardial infarction, or STEMI — time is of the essence.
Jefferson Health recently received New Jersey state certification to offer a specialized treatment, Percutaneous Coronary Intervention, for STEMI patients at its Washington Township Hospital Catheterization Lab.
A STEMI is a type of heart attack caused by a complete blockage of a coronary artery. These heart attacks are extremely serious and can be life-threatening.
“Time is critical to open up these vessels to save the patient’s life,” Dr. Henry Schuitema, chief of emergency medicine at Jefferson Health – East Region, and associate chief medical officer at Jefferson Washington Township Hospital, said. “This new service will enable us to quickly provide lifesaving-care to community members experiencing STEMI. It is yet another step in our efforts to continually offer the highest level of care possible, close to home.”
For STEMI patients, the necessary time to undergo PCI — a non-surgical procedure to treat blockages in the coronary artery — is within 90 minutes of arriving at one of Jefferson’s New Jersey hospitals and being sent to the Catheterization Lab.
Jefferson Health will accept STEMI patients from both the inpatient patient care units and/or emergency departments at its New Jersey hospitals. The Jefferson Transfer Center will arrange for immediate transfers to the Jefferson Washington Township Catheterization Lab for patients needing PCI.