Cole J et al.: Opportunistic pulse checks in primary care to improve recognition of atrial fibrillation: a retrospective analysis of electronic patient records. Br J Gen Pract (2018) 68(671):e388-e393.
Ein systematisches Programm zur Förderung regelmäßiger opportunistischer Puls-Selbstkontrollen bei ≥65-Jährigen konnte 2007-2017 in drei Londoner Bezirken die Häufigkeit der Selbstkontrollen von 7.3 auf 93.1 % steigern. Die alters-adjustierte Prävalenz von Vorhofflimmern stieg im Beobachtungszeitraum von im Mittel 61.4/1000 auf 67.3/1000 um 9.6 % (5.9/1000) signifikant, es wurden 790 zusätzliche Fälle identifiziert.
Atrial fibrillation (AF) is an important and modifiable risk factor for stroke. Earlier identification may reduce stroke-related morbidity and mortality. Trial evidence shows that opportunistic pulse regularity checks in individuals aged ≥65 years increases detection of AF. However, this is not currently recommended by the National Screening Programme or implemented by most clinical commissioning groups (CCGs).
To evaluate the impact of a systematic programme to promote pulse regularity checks, the programme’s uptake in general practice, and the prevalence of AF.
DESIGN AND SETTING:
Retrospective analysis of electronic primary care patient records in three east London CCGs (City and Hackney, Newham, and Tower Hamlets) over 10 years.
Rates of pulse regularity checks and prevalence of AF in individuals aged ≥65 years were compared from the pre-intervention period, 2007-2011, to the post-intervention period, 2012-2017.
Across the three CCGs, rates of pulse regularity checks increased from a mean of 7.3% pre-intervention to 66.4% post-intervention, achieving 93.1% (n = 58 722) in the final year. Age-standardised prevalence of AF in individuals aged ≥65 years increased significantly from a pre-intervention mean of 61.4/1000 to a post-intervention mean of 64.5/1000. There was a significant increase in a post-intervention trend to a final-year mean of 67.3/1000: an improvement of 9.6% (5.9/1000) with 790 additional new cases identified.
Organisational alignment, standardised data entry, peer-performance dashboards, and financial incentives rapidly and generally increased opportunistic screening with pulse regularity checks. This was associated with a significant increase in detection and prevalence of AF and is of public health importance.