Asian-American Heart Attack Care Now Similar to Whites

Similar improvement in rates for performance measures, defect-free care, door-to-balloon times

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Recently, the quality of care following acute myocardial infarction (AMI) has improved for Asian-American and white patients, and the differences in care between Asian and white patients have also been reduced, according to a study published online Jan. 10 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

Feng Qian, M.D., Ph.D., of the University of Rochester in New York, and colleagues examined data on 107,403 patients with AMI (4.1 percent Asian) from 382 U.S. centers participating in the American Heart Association's Get With The Guidelines-Coronary Artery Disease program from 2003 to 2008. Six AMI performance measures were examined as well as composite "defect-free" care (proportion receiving all eligible performance measures), door-to-balloon time, and in-hospital mortality.

The researchers found that, compared to white patients, Asian AMI patients were significantly older, more likely to be covered by Medicaid, recruited in the west region, and had an elevated prevalence of diabetes, hypertension, heart failure, and smoking. Overall, baseline quality of care for Asian-American patients was comparable to whites except that Asians were less likely to receive smoking cessation counseling than whites (65.6 versus 81.5 percent). Significant improvements in the six AMI individual measures, defect-free care, and door-to-balloon time were experienced by Asian patients, and rates were similar for Asians and whites. The in-hospital adjusted mortality rate was higher among Asian-American patients than whites (adjusted relative risk, 1.16).

"Differences in care between Asians and whites, when present, were reduced over time," the authors conclude.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical and medical device industries.

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