New and enhanced communication links

Maintaining contact with patients and colleagues is essential

COVID has highlighted gaps in the pathway of care for cardiac patients. We strongly recommend new and enhanced communication strategies between patients and primary physicians/cardiologists on one hand, and between primary physicians and cardiologists on the other hand. It will help streamline diagnosis, monitoring and the treatment of non-hospitalised but diseased patients, and so prevent acute events or the worsening of stable conditions.

How to foster effective communication between patients and healthcare practitioners?

Set up a direct phone-line at a set timeslot each day, so patients can call a cardiologist for quick advice.

Send out weekly SMS messages to your patients, reminding them to call in case of new or worsening symptoms.

Set up a personal or cardiology division web platform for virtual appointments. Offer the timeslots to patients who are particularly worried about the risk of infection when visiting their doctors.

Reaching out to patients sometimes is not enough. We strongly recommend enhanced communication links between all of us. Discover how to improve connections with the GP/other specialist colleagues involved in each case.

How to enhance communication links between GPs, cardiologists and other medical specialists?

A dedicated cardiologist could take care of this service on a weekly rota basis, answering queries about exam interpretation and requests, etc. and avoiding unnecessary in-person appointments that overcrowd the department.

Ask your administrative services to set up the automatic transmission of discharge letters or exams directly to each patient’s referring physician. It will avoid patients making an appointment just to hand over documents.

Organise shared web consultations when appropriate. For example, a GP can ask a cardiologist to join a particularly challenging CV patient visit, or a cardiologist may invite a GP to join a cardiac consultation.

Alternatively, this approach could be used between GPs and cardiologists/medical specialists to discuss patient diagnosis and therapeutic pathway options.

Have you implemented an effective solution to deal with the pandemic? Why not share it on video with our community?

Simply use the contact form below to express your interest in sharing a testimonial and we’ll send you the guidelines to record the video and submit your file.

    Available resources

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    Scientific society positions
    Aortic stenosis
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    All resources

    Advocating for continuity of cardiac care (video) – Dr F Ribichini

    (EUROPCR 2021)

    US (ACC-SCAI) – Triage considerations for patients referred for SHD during the COVID-19 pandemic

    (JACC: CV Interventions, 2020, Vol. 13)


    US (ACC-SCAI-ACEP) – Management of AMI during the COVID-19 pandemic

    (JACC, 2020, Vol. 76)


    Managing severe aortic stenosis in COVID-19 era

    (JACC: CV Interventions, 2020, Vol. 13)


    Management of ACS during the MERS-CoV outbreak – Single centre experience

    (Cardiovacular Revascularisation Medicine, 2021, Vol. 24)


    ITALY – ISIC position statement for cath-lab preparedness recommendations in case of suspected, probable or confirmed cases of COVID-19

    (Catheterisation & Cardiovascular Interventions 2020, Vol. 96)


    EU (ESC) nursing – Facilitating transcather aortic valve implantation in the era of COVID-19 – recommendations for programmes

    (Eur Jour Of Cardiovasc Nursing, 2020, Vol.19)


    EU (EAPCI) – Position statement on invasive management of ACS during the COVID-19 pandemic

    (Eur Heart Jour, 2020, Vol. 41)


    CHINA – CSC expert consensus on principles of clinical management of patients with severe emergent CVD during the COVID-19 pandemic

    (Circulation AHA, 2020, Vol. 141)


    CANADA – Precautions & procedures for coronary and structural cardiac interventions during the COVID-19 pandemic

    (Canadian Jour of Cardiology, 2020, Vol. 36)


    AUSTRALIA/NEW ZEALAND – Consensus guidelines for international cardiology services delivery during COVID-19 pandemic

    (Heart, Lung and Circulation, 2020, Vol. 29)


    ASIA – Transcatheter aortic valve implantation during the COVID-19 pandemic – clinical expert opinion and consensus statement

    (Journal of Cardiac Surgery, 2020, Vol. 35)


    Airway management in the OR and interventional suites in known or suspected COVID-19 adult patients – a practical review

    (Anesthesia and Analgesia, 2020, Vol. 131)


    Regional, national, international regulations and clinical guidelines

    (We CARE, 2021)


    Advocating for continuity of cardiac care (PDF) – Dr F Ribichini

    (EUROPCR 2021)