Johnson County EMS (Emergency Medical Services) has received the CARES (Cardiac Arrest Registry to Enhance Survival) Hallmark Award in recognition of its five-year participation and dedication to collecting out-of-hospital-cardiac-arrest (OHCA) data.
Each year, approximately 350,000 persons in the United States experience an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) or sudden death; approximately 90% of persons who experience an OHCA die. Despite decades of research, median reported rates of survival to hospital discharge are poor (10.4%) and have remained virtually unchanged for the past 30 years. Without a uniform and reliable method of data collection, communities cannot measure the effectiveness of their response systems, nor can they assess the impact of interventions designed to improve OHCA survival. Participation in an OHCA registry enables communities to compare patient populations, interventions, and outcomes with the goal of identifying opportunities to improve quality of care and ascertain whether resuscitation is provided according to evidence based guidelines.
“The CARES registry allows the EMS System to compare itself on a number of metrics regarding cardiac arrest care in our community. We literally measure everything from the time of the 911 call to the patient outcome at the hospital,” said Dr. Ryan Jacobsen, Johnson County EMS System medical director. “While it takes a tremendous amount of effort and coordination to obtain these metrics, we believe it is well worth it in order to showcase the Johnson County EMS System and the care we provide the citizens of the county.”
CARES was developed to help communities determine standard outcome measures for out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) locally, allowing for quality improvement efforts and benchmarking capability to improve care and increase survival.
“Your commitment to measuring OHCA data enables your community to analyze and benchmark their performance with aggregate statistics at the local, state and national level. This allows your organization and community to discover opportunities for improvement in an effort to improve emergency cardiac care,” said Chanarion Arnold, MPH, program associate for CARES at Emory University.