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Minerva Cardiology and Angiology 2022 August;70(4):468-75

DOI: 10.23736/S2724-5683.20.05477-8

Copyright © 2020 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

lingua: Inglese

How to keep the cath-lab of a COVID-free hub center during the pandemic in a hub and spoke cardiology network: a single center’s experience

Marco BORGHESI , Filippo ZILIO, Giuseppe BRAITO, Michele DALLAGO, Simone MURAGLIA, Daniel TODARO, Roberto BONMASSARI

Division of Interventional Cardiology, Department of Cardiology, Santa Chiara Hospital, Trento, Italy



BACKGROUND: Northern Italy has been one of the most affected area in the world by the novel severe acute respiratory syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The healthcare system has been overwhelmed by the huge number of patients in need of mechanical ventilation or intensive care, resulting in a delay of treatment of patients with acute coronary syndrome (ACS), due to a crash in STEMI networks and closure of a certain number of hub centers, and to a delay in patients’ seeking for medical evaluation for chest pain or angina-equivalent symptoms.
METHODS: In the Trentino region, a mountainous area with about 500,000 inhabitants, very close to Lombardy that was the epicenter of the pandemic in Italy, to avoid these dramatic consequences, we developed a new protocol tailored to our specificity to keep our institution, and above all the cath-lab, clean from the SARS-CoV-2 infection, to ensure full operativity for cardiologic emergencies.
RESULTS: Applying this protocol during the two months of the peak of the infection in Italy no one of the staff members of the cath-lab, the ICCU or the cardiology ward tested positive to nasal swab for SARS-CoV-2 and the same result was obtained for all the patients admitted to our units.
CONCLUSIONS: Our real-world experience shows that during the COVID-19 pandemic, quick activation of an appropriate protocol defining specific pathways for patients with a medical urgency is effective in minimizing healthcare personnel exposure and to preserve full operativity of the hub centers. This issue will be of a crucial importance, now that we are facing the second wave of the pandemic.


KEY WORDS: SARS-CoV-2; Coronavirus; Infections; Prevention and control; Myocardial infarction; Emergency medicine

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