A world-first randomised trial that was embedded in practice at Adelaide’s public hospital emergency departments has delivered shorter wait times and lower hospital admissions while maintaining health outcomes for patients.
The RAPID-TnT trial was led by SAHMRI and Flinders University Professor of Cardiology Derek Chew. He says the key component was significantly reducing the time between blood tests for anyone with presented to EDs with chest pain.
“By testing someone’s blood for a protein called troponin T we can see whether they are having a heart attack,” Professor Chew said.
“Current guidelines dictate EDs do these blood tests as soon as a patient arrives and then again three hours later to compare their protein levels. The RAPID-TnT trial investigated whether performing the follow-up test after one hour could be just as, or even more, effective.”
More than 3000 patients with chest pain were involved in the study at the Royal Adelaide, Queen Elizabeth, Flinders and Noarlunga Hospitals. On presentation they were randomly allocated to a zero-and-three-hour testing group or a zero-and-one-hour testing group.