ORLANDO — Ways to ensure the highest quality of care for patients treated by interventional cardiologists will get increased attention at this week’s meeting of the Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions.

In addition to the coronary, peripheral, structural, and congenital heart disease tracks, a quality track will be added to this year’s lineup, according to program co-chair Kenneth Rosenfield, MD, of Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.

Topics covered throughout the meeting as part of that track will include quality improvement, cost consciousness, patient-centered care, accountability and transparency, practical knowledge and skills, appropriate use criteria, and ways to eliminate practice variations across interventional cardiology, he said in an interview.

Rosenfield said interventional cardiologists have embraced the new era in which accountability has been stressed and outcomes have become increasingly scrutinized.

“There’s no other specialty in medicine that collects as much data about what we do and is as scientifically driven as our specialty,” he said. “And while that’s a really good thing for patients and a good thing for moving the specialty forward, it also produces a lot of data that people can analyze and puts us a little bit in the cross hairs.”

“At the same time, we think that’s a good thing,” he said. “We want to continue those good practices and use the data that we collect and the willingness to police ourselves … to optimize care for our patients.”

Headlining the scientific program at the meeting are three late-breaking clinical trials, including an analysis of the CREST trial looking at whether performing angioplasty after carotid stent deployment has any effect on clinical outcomes, and results from the POSEIDON trial, which evaluated sliding-scale hydration to prevent contrast-induced acute kidney injury.

The third trial — VERITAS — examined whether performing live transmissions of transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) cases is associated with patient outcomes, a topic clinicians have been concerned about, Rosenfield said. He noted that this year’s meeting will not have live case transmissions, as the society decided that taped cases “with a live feel” could offer comparable — if not better — educational value.

Also highlighting the meeting are a series of keynote addresses, starting with one delivered during the opening session on Wednesday by Reed Tuckson, MD, a former executive with UnitedHealth Group, on the challenges and opportunities for quality and cost-effective care delivery.

“He’s not going to tell us what we want to know,” Rosenfield said. “He’s going to tell us what we need to know to change our practices and our behaviors, to be more accountable, to be transparent, and to do the right thing for the right patient at the right time, every time.”

Near the end of the meeting on Friday, two other keynote addresses will discuss the state of cardiovascular device regulation and research.

In the first, Jeffrey Popma, MD, of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston and a past president of SCAI, will talk about how the regulatory process in the U.S. is affecting interventional device innovation.

“It’s going to basically challenge us and challenge the U.S. about the fact that we have lost some of our edge in terms of being the lead innovator for new devices, new technologies, and new therapies for our patients,” Rosenfield said.

That will be followed up by a keynote delivered by Robert “Chip” Hance, a former president of Abbott Vascular who now works for the FDA. Hance will discuss ways to streamline processes to correct the problems highlighted by Popma.

All of the addresses, Rosenfield said, are ultimately focused on bringing the best therapies to patients.

Source: MedPage Today.