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One Year on, More Countries Join the Growing "Stent for Life" Intiative to Drive for Equal Access to Life-Saving Treatment

30/08/2010 - Stockholm, Sweeden

Intiative aims to increase the proportion of patients with ST elevation myocardial infarction recieving primary percutaneous coronary intervention, thus reducing the mortality, stroke and further heart attacks.

Today the national cardiology societies of Egypt, Italy and Romania reinforce the Stent for Life Declaration with their formal ascension to the Initiative during the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Congress 2010 in Stockholm, bringing the total number of member countries to nine. Stent for Life was initiated one year ago during the European Association of Percutaneous Cardiovascular Interventions (EAPCI) General Assembly at the ESC Congress 2009 in Barcelona.

The Stent for Life Initiative supports implementation of local ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) treatment guidelines, helps identify specific barriers to implementation of guidelines and defines actions to make sure that majority of STEMI patients have access to the life saving indication of primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PPCI)1. Dr William Wijns, past-president of EAPCI, and SFL founder explains "The new European myocardial revascularization guidelines released yesterday reinforce the importance of achieving best clinical practice and reflect the growing evidence for the benefit of prompt intervention in all patients with STEMI".

Professor Giulio Guagliumi, President of the Italian Society of Invasive Cardiology GISE says "Today we signed up to drive for better access to PPCI in our country, as there is indisputable scientific evidence that using PPCI in patients with acute forms of coronary artery disease is life saving compared to the previous standard of care. The Italian Society of Invasive Cardiology has evidence that in certain regions of Italy higher proportions of patients have access to this treatment than in others and we are determined to eliminate this variation."

The Stent for Life mission is to increase the use of PPCI to more than 70% of all STEMI patients, achieving PPCI rates of more than 600 per one million inhabitants a year. To do this the aim is to offer 24/7 PCI service at all relevant facilities to cover the country population need. Professor Petr Widimsky, Co-Chairman of SFL Initiative announces "Egypt, Italy and Romania have joined Stent for Life as they, like us, see the the need to promote lifesaving indications of PPCI in those patient groups who will benefit the most. We observed that a number of countries have succeeded in implementing PPCI for almost all patients in need and therefore we aim to support the rest of Europe in achieving the same goals")2.

About Stent for Life

There is indisputable scientific evidence that myocardial revascularization in patients with acute forms of coronary artery disease is life saving; it reduces mortality, rates of non-fatal reinfarction and stroke, as compared to the previous standard of care (pharmacological treatment, including thrombolytic therapy for STEMI).

The Stent for Life Initiative is a unique European platform for interventional cardiologists, government representatives, industry partners, patient groups and patients to work together and, by shaping the health care systems and medical practices, ensure that the majority of STEMI patients will have an equal access to the life saving indication of PCI.

The executive board is: Prof. Petr Widimsky, Co-Chairman; Dr. Jean Fajadet, Co-Chairman; Dr. William Wijns; Prof. Carlo di Mario; Prof. Nicolas Danchin; Prof. Steen D. Kristensen; Dr. Zuzana Kaifoszova; Marielle de la Torre.

The participating organizations are: EAPCI, EuroPCR, the ESC Working Group on Acute Cardiac Care and the National Cardiology Societies and/or National Working Groups for Interventional Cardiology (WGIC).

The current member countries are: Egypt, Italy, Romania, Bulgaria, France, Greece, Serbia, Spain and Turkey.

The industry partners are: Abbott Vascular, Biotronik, Boston Scientific, Cordis Johnson&Johnson, Eli Lilly, IHT-Cordynamics, InspireMD, Medtronic, Philips Healthcare, Terumo Europe and The Medicines Company.

For more information

Visit www.stentforlife.com

Zuzana Kaifoszova, M.D., MBA - Stent for Life Initiative Project Manager, Europe
kaifosz@gmail.com - Mobile: +420 724 547 303

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(1) ESC/EACTS Guidelines on Myocardial Revascularization

(2) Widimsky P, Fajadet J, Danchin N, Wijns W. "Stent 4 Life". Targeting PCI at all who will benefit the most. A joint project between EAPCI, Euro-PCR, EUCOMED and the ESC Working Group on Acute Cardiac Care. EuroInterv. 2009; 4: 555-557.