call to needle

call to needle

A term of art referring to the time elapsed between the call for an ambulance to assist a patient suffering a heart attack and the moment that thrombolytics are first administered. In the UK, the target is < 1 hour.
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"Call to needle' time is no exception, with an increase in the number of patients receiving thrombolysis, the clot-busting drug, within 60 minutes of placing the call for professional help.
'This year we are placing particular emphasis on improving the 'Call to Needle' times, which means reducing the time between the call for professional help to the time the patient receives their clot-busting drug.'
When we looked at the patients whose call to needle time was too long we discovered frequently this was because patients call their own doctor rather than dial 999.
If the paramedics had administered thrombolytics, the median interval between the 911 call and initiation of thrombolysis ("call to needle" time) would have been 28 minutes, a median savings of 48 minutes.
If the paramedics had actually started thrombolysis, the goal of a 60-minute "call to needle" time would have been met in 95% of cases, and 22% of patients would have received thrombolytics within 60 minutes of the onset of symptoms, compared with the current rate of 3%.
'Consistency in achieving the 60 minute call to needle time needs to be approved.
'Real progress however in reducing the call to needle time can be achieved by the introduction of pre-hospital treatment, which means that some patients may be given their drugs before their arrival at hospital, either by a GP or a specially trained paramedic.