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Off-Hour Hospital Arrival Linked to Poorer Outcomes in Cardiac Patients

Having a heart attack and arriving at the emergency department at night or on the weekends may be linked to a poorer prognosis, USA Today reports. The finding is based on a study in BMJ that collected data from various studies conducted between 1987 and 2011 that examined the relationship between the time at which a heart attack patient arrived at the hospital and the likelihood of their death. Researchers found that “heart attack patients who show up at hospitals on nights or weekends are about 5% more likely to die, either immediately or in the next 30 days, than those who arrive on a weekday” and that they were 40% less likely than weekday patients to have an angioplasty during the 90-minute window considered ideal. Experts say, “the most likely explanation for the higher death rate is that hospitals provide worse care in off hours.”

Read the article published by USA Today.

Read the study in BMJ Open.