The Worst Place To Have a Heart Attack Is In A Hospital

You'd think that a hospital would be the best place to suddenly have a medical emergency. However, according to a new study, the hospital is perhaps the worst place to have a heart attack. As patients already admitted for other symptoms may recieve delayed treatment for a heart attack occuring while they're being treated, the survival rate is low.

Survival Rate Less than 50%

The New England Journal of Medicine conducted a study that suggests that the survival rate for cardiac arrest patients being treated at a hospital is less than 50%. This is because of the unusually long wait for a shock from the defibrillator.

In fact, the study suggests that of cardiac arrest patients are more likely to survive an attack at a casino or another location where the defibrillator is readily available. If you look at places such as casinos and gyms, you'll notice multiple defribillators attached to different walls.

Time of Day Affects Patient's Treatment

The study also suggested that the time of day a patient is admitted gravely affects the patient's ability to be treated. The times when staffing is low, such as graveyard shifts from five in the evening to eight in the morning, are when the delays in attending to the patient are extended.

According to the study, patients are it's recommended to not wait longer than two minutes to administer the life-saving shock of a defibrillator. However, a lower-staffed hospital may have longer wait times.

Being Admitted For Other Ilnesses Hinders Response Time

University of Southern California's Leslie Saxon, who wrote an editorial on this study, stated that while patients are expected to be treated quickly for something as severe as a cardiac arrest emergency, this is quite often not the case -- and not always becuase of understaffing.

Being admitted for a different illness first could also lower your chances of rapid response time to a heart attack. The study also showed that some response delays are a result of patients who are admitted for something other than a heart illness, and suffer a heart attack while at the hospital for treatment.