A great care pathway between Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) paramedics and Queensland Health staff saves heart muscle and in turn, lives when a patient suffers a heart attack.
Former world longboard champion and Gold Coast surfing icon Andrew ‘Andy Mac’ McKinnon knows this first hand after he was rushed to hospital in July.
Andy had just returned home from walking the Currumbin stairs and was having a cup of tea when he noticed he was sweating profusely and began experiencing a pain in his chest he described as “an elephant sitting on my chest”.
Andy’s wife, Megan wasted no time dialling Triple Zero (000) to get paramedics on the way.
On arrival, paramedics quickly recognised Andy was having a heart attack.
Andy was rushed to Gold Coast University Hospital as the crew liaised over the phone with the on duty interventional cardiologist so they could prepare for Andy’s arrival.
He was taken straight into the Cardiac Catheter lab where he received a stent to open the vessels in his heart.
Andy said staff later explained to him that his case was ‘text book’ and that he was lucky to be alive.
Four weeks on and recovering at home, Andy wanted to share his story to highlight his appreciation of the world class care provided by the team of paramedics and members of the receiving cardiac team who saved his life.
Deputy Premier and Minister for Health and Ambulance Services Steven Miles said a seamless transition from ambulance stretcher to hospital bed for cardiac intervention has been a tremendous advancement in providing top level coronary care for Queenslanders.
“Andy’s story highlights and celebrates the achievements the QAS and Queensland Health staff have made together to enable the best possible outcome for patients suffering a heart attack,” Deputy Premier Miles said.
“Eight of our public hospitals in Queensland offer this service to their community which has gradually increased since the inception of the pre-hospital reperfusion program for Advanced Care Paramedics in 2016”.
QAS Acting Assistant Commissioner Gold Coast Local Ambulance Service Network Chris Draper said early pre-hospital notification and timely reperfusion were critical for the survival of patients suffering a heart attack.
“The recognition and quick treatment of heart attack patients by paramedics is something we are proud of and continually working to improve,” Mr Draper said.
“It is great to see Andy under better circumstances and to recognise the lifesaving work of our crews.”
Deputy Premier and Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services
The Honourable Steven Miles