Cardiovascular Rounds

Updated SCAI guidelines for cardiac cath lab best practices

by Julie Bass

In 2012, the Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions (SCAI) published a revolutionary paper detailing best practices in the cardiac cath lab. Prior to the release of these guidelines, there had been no nationwide process standardization in cath labs.

This week, SCAI published the first update to the guidelines in the society’s official journal, Catheterization and Cardiovascular Interventions. The updates include best practices to improve the quality of care and patient experience from pre-procedure to post-procedure.

The document, “SCAI Expert Consensus Statement: 2016 Best Practices in the Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory,” includes a few key updates to the original guidelines:

      1. Components of an optimal cardiac cath lab procedural team including clinical competency guidelines, recommended certifications and experience level for lab staff, and appropriate staffing and role delineation
      2. Updated pre-procedure check list and pre-procedure best practices including informed consent and documentation, history and physician (H&P) examination, and medication review with new medications not included in the original paper
      3. Recommended governance and role of the cath lab director including maintenance of appropriate industry relationships, registry participation requirements, and cost control considerations
      4. Key techniques for enhancing patient satisfaction from pre-procedure through post-procedure
      5. Intra-procedure best practices from patient preparation, appropriate anesthesia administration, infection control, and reducing radiation exposure and fluoroscopy time
      6. Evidence for appropriate radial access usage and when to consider approaches through the radial artery versus the femoral artery.
      7. Post-procedure guidelines including new data elements to include in quality procedure reports, emphasis on the necessity of medication reconciliation prior to discharge, endorsed referral of all patients post-PCI to cardiac rehab, and support of same-day discharge for PCI patients if appropriate

Download the guidelines to learn more about SCAI’s recommendations.

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