Death rates higher at nights and weekends

22 January 2014        

Category: BHF Comment

Doctor and nurse

Mortality is higher for heart attack patients who arrive at hospital during the night or at weekends, a study has found.

Researchers analysed the results of 48 studies across the US, Canada and Europe to assess the effects of ‘out of hours’ treatment for heart attack patients.

Patients who came to hospital at night or over the weekend were found to have a five per cent increase in mortality compared to patients treated during regular hours.

We can all help save lives by thinking quickly in an emergency.

Our Senior Cardiac Nurse, Christopher Allen, said: “These worrying findings suggest higher death rates worldwide for heart attack patients during out of hours periods. In the UK, the NHS is taking action and calling for a uniform 24-hour service in hospitals – this study reinforces the need for this.

“Whether it’s the weekend or not, time is always crucial for heart attack patients. But the clock starts ticking before the patient reaches the hospital and we can all help to save lives by thinking quickly in an emergency situation.

“If you are experiencing symptoms of a heart attack such as chest pain and shortness of breath, it’s vital you act fast and phone 999 for an ambulance straight away.”