The Handoff: Your Week in Cardiology News – 3/31/17

The Handoff is a weekly roundup of cardiology news covering various developments in subspecialties, as well as pharmaceutical industry, association, and society news.

  • Last week, The Cardiology Advisor linked to a study on the benefits of automated external defibrillators (AED) in public places. This week, a review in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology highlights the discrepancies of AED policies in US schools: only 17 states require AED installation in at least some schools, and the remaining 33 have no legislation at all.
  • The severity-based Stroke Triage Algorithm, developed by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, will help emergency medical services improve outcomes for stroke patients. To learn more about this new protocol, register for an upcoming national webinar on April 3.
  • Coordination of large clinical trials can be a logistical nightmare, but the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has announced an initiative that will alleviate this burden by creating a Streamlined, Multisite, Accelerated Resources for Trials (SMART) Institutional Review Board (IRB) authorization agreement. Now, all participating study sites can rely on just 1 IRB ethics review for each study, which will significantly speed up the process of multisite study initiation. 
  • The New England Journal of Medicine will host a free web event, “Aligning Incentives for Sharing Clinical Trial Data” on April 3-4, 2017. Register here.
  • In a related NEJM “Sounding Board” article, Barbara E. Bierer, MD; Mercé Crosas, PhD; and Heather H. Pearce, JD, MPH propose that researchers who initially gather data should receive “appropriate and standardized credit” that can be leveraged toward academic advancement, grant applications, and other situations, as a means of incentive for data sharing.
  • The FDA issued a safety alert for the Phillips HeartStart MRx Monitor/Defibrillator. The device is being recalled on account of electrical and battery connection issues that may prevent it from starting up, charging, and delivering life-saving electrical shocks to patients with sudden cardiac arrest.
  • The American Heart Association released a scientific statement that older adults with heart disease can improve their cardiac health and quality of life by increasing their physical activity. In addition, physical activity can improve strength, balance, and reduces frailty. 
  • Could health care leadership be transformed via a military leadership model? A recent article published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology suggests that the military and medicine are linked by the life and death scenarios that often arise, and that the US Army specifically uses several applicable techniques such as “Be, Know, Do.”