A new report detailing the work of the National Clinical Programme for Acute Coronary Syndrome (ACS), shows that treatment for heart attack patients in Ireland is on a par with, or above, international standards.


In 2016, 1,412 people were treated for a major heart attack in Ireland with 96% of eligible patients receiving PPCI*. 82% of these patients received rapid PPCI treatment within 120 minutes when arriving directly to PPCI centre (compared to 41% of patients who were transferred from another hospital).  (*PPCI is a procedure to remove a clot and insert a stent into the coronary artery and is the main treatment for ST Elevation Myocardial Infarction (STEMI / heart attack) in Ireland).


Speaking about the report Prof Kieran Daly, Clinical Lead for the ASC Programme, said: “Owing to the commitment of staff at hospitals, the National Ambulance Service and the Dublin Fire Brigade Ambulance Service, timeliness for ACS treatment has greatly improved and a standard national delivery of treatment for patients has been developed. The focus now is to ensure that this service is maintained and improved and incorporates the broader group of acute coronary syndrome patients.”


People who are most at risk of a heart attack are people over 50, smokers, over-weight, people with known cholesterol issues / blood pressure and those with a strong family history. Dr Siobhan Jennings, Consultant in Public Health Medicine, outlined the importance of smoking cessation counselling in PPCI centres. “Smoking levels are high in STEMI patients (38%), so helping a patient to stop smoking is essential and is as important as other treatment measures. It is never too late to quit smoking, I would encourage all smokers not to wait another day and to visit www.quit.ie”. 


What to do if you are concerned about chest pain:

If you are concerned about chest pain dial 999 or 112 to go directly to PPCI centre.


5,929 people have QUIT smoking this year. Join them!

The QUIT Team Are Here To Help, free phone 1800 201 203 or live chat on  www.quit.ie


Download or view the report at hse.ie