NEW YORK, July 7 (Praxis Press) Prompt treatment of heart attacks is crucial to the survival of the patient. Two important treatments that require trained emergency medical personnel and need to be administered as quickly as possible are drugs to dissolve clots (thrombolytic agents) and defibrillation and other methods to control heart arrhythmias. Rapid access to emergency medical care is a problem in many communities and even when the decision is made to seek medical care, most patients in the US avoid ambulance service, preferring to get to the hospital themselves. A recent study evaluated the effect of a community-wide education program designed to decrease delay in access to medical care for patients with heart attacks. Use of emergency medical services by patients with chest pain increased significantly in communities that received the intervention, but there was no difference in the change in delay time from symptom onset...

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