Ideally, a patient suffering a heart attack should receive an angioplasty, a balloon procedure that clears a blocked artery, within 90 minutes of arriving at the hospital. The time is a benchmark used by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
Every minute that the patient is not treated equates to heart muscle damage and cardiac death. Research has shown that decreasing that response time equates to higher survival rates and speedier patient recovery.
Paramedics hook a patient with chest pains to the Lifepak 12 or 15 EKG monitor and transmit the 12-Lead EKG via Bluetooth and Cellular Technology. Within 30 seconds, a computer in the hospital's cath lab chimes with the notification, as well as the Blackberry of Dr. Hashmi, Cardiac Medical Director at the Heart Hospital. This is done while the ambulance is still en route to the Chest Pain Center.
With this transmission, the doctor can see exactly what they need and make the determination.