The importance of PPCI activations

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Following discussions with colleagues at the PPCI (primary percutaneous coronary intervention) centre at Papworth Hospital, I would like to remind you of the importance of appropriate activation of the PPCI pathway, i.e. calling the centre to alert them about the patient you are bringing in.

This is with specific reference to intubated patients – it is important to identify on the initial activation, or via a subsequent phone call, that your patient is intubated, due to the need for Papworth (or any PPCI centre) to inform you that they have ITU (ventilated) capacity.

Without this information, there can be a delay in transferring the patient if there are multiple clinicians on scene, so please ensure a care plan is identified and discussed with the PPCI centre as appropriate, e.g if you have worked with a critical care team who have given anaesthetic.

Transferring patients from acutes to PPCI

There have also been occasions when patients from an acute hospital have arrived at a PPCI centre without having received an activation.

As part of the regional pathway, it is the responsibility of the ambulance crew to ensure they activate the PPCI centre, which most commonly happens when transferring from a ward or emergency department.

The rationale behind this is that we are in the best position to judge which PPCI centre is most suitable, with our knowledge of local road and travel conditions. It is possible that doctors at the acute hospital may have discussed with the PPCI team, but we still need to activate them, as we have confirmed the destination.

Marcus Bailey
Consultant Paramedic

Published 21st December 2014 

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