Innovation Delivers Higher Quality Care at a Lower Cost

2011-07-07
 

Medical Imaging InnovationFractional Flow Reserve (FFR) – a technique used in conjunction with cardiac medical imaging – is proving to be both a cost-saving and results-improving procedure, according to an article in Diagnostic and Interventional Cardiology.

FFR, which is used during a routine cardiac catheterization, measures the severity of blood flow blockages in coronary arteries. It helps physicians to better identify which specific lesion or lesions are responsible for a deficient blood supply to the heart.

Since the famous FAME study of 2009, which showed that FFR-guided PCI led to better outcomes than angiography-guided PCI, medical researchers around the world have been working to corroborate FAME’s results. Studies from the United Kingdom, France, and Italy have done just that.

Here are the details:

  • United Kingdom. FFR prevents, on the average, more than 30 avoidable deaths, 70 heart attacks, and 120 major adverse cardiac events over two years. FFR savings: approximately 600 Euros ($858) per patient, or more than 1.1 million Euros ($1.6 million) over two years.
  • France. FFR prevents, on the average, 300 avoidable deaths, 700 heart attacks, and 1200 major adverse cardio events over two years. FFR savings: 900 Euros ($1300) per patient, or more than 16 million Euros ($22.9 million) over two years.
  • Italy. FFR prevents, on the average, 120 avoidable deaths, 300 heart attacks, and 520 major adverse cardiac events over two years. FFR savings: 500 Euros ($715) per patient, or 3.8 million Euros ($5.4 million) over two years.

Similar studies from Belgium and Switzerland will come out later this year. Preliminary results suggest similar cost-savings and improved health results.

Here at McKesson, the results of the original FAME study and feedback from our customers provided the guidance necessary to release a new version of Horizon Cardiology that automates the process of capturing and documenting the FFR information. This integrated FFR option to our hemodynamic monitoring system helps clinicians take advantage of FFR, while ensuring an accurate and efficient workflow is maintained in the cath lab environment. We’re hopeful that advances like FFR in the fields of medical imaging and medical software (like PACS, RIS, and CVIS) will result in similar improvements in health care while also making health care delivery more efficient.

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