Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Hospitals might miss tPA benefits

Patients who need clotbusting tPA can fall through the cracks, as this recent Modern Medicine article illustrates:

Two-thirds of US hospitals do not administer tissue plasminogen activator (t-PA) to patients who have a stroke and are covered by Medicare, according to the results of a national study conducted between 2005 and 2007, which were presented at the International Stroke Conference 2009.

Furthermore, many of these patients reside in counties that do not have a hospital that delivers t-PA at a rate equalling or surpassing the national average in t-PA delivery. Hospitals that did not give t-PA to patients covered by Medicare tended to be small and rural, said the study’s lead investigator, Dawn Kleindorfer, MD, stroke neurologist and associate professor, University of Cincinnati.

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