08 February 2022

The VAHI-supported Victorian Cardiac Outcomes Registry (VCOR) is playing a key role in improving cardiac care at health services across Victoria, including helping the cardiac catheterisation service at Bendigo Health to become one of the state’s busiest centres for the acute treatment of heart attacks.

Bendigo’s Director of Cardiology, Dr Voltaire Nadurata, says that Bendigo’s close involvement (with the VCOR) has greatly assisted his department during this period of expansion, ensuring that high quality, safe and effective treatment continues to be provided to ever-increasing numbers of regional Victorians needing cardiac care. 

“Our program initially started with diagnostic coronary angiography but then expanded to the provision of percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) in 2011,” Dr Nadurata said. “As our experience and expertise developed, we further extended our service beyond stable coronary artery disease to non-ST elevation ACS (NSTE-ACS) then subsequently primary PCI for ST elevation ACS (STEACS).”

The data collected and analysed through the VCOR was instrumental in not only starting but also developing and improving the PCI program. 

“Our program for thrombolytic therapy for STEACS and the data fed back to us by VCOR clearly showed us the need for a primary PCI program,” Dr Nadurata said.  “It has not just simply provided the statistics in our region but it has offered us a window to show the results in comparison to primary PCI.”

Dr Nadurata said performance and outcome data from VCOR has also been critically important in justifying the need for such a service in a regional centre, including supporting the expansion of the service beyond three days per week.

“The data on our performance from VCOR showed us a clear cost benefit of offering a more extensive service, rather than “drip and ship” approach to a primary PCI capable centre” he explained.

Since the expansion there have been a range of improvements in outcomes, including a reduction in length of stay.

Dr Nadurata said that regular VCOR committee reviews together with Bendigo’s local institutional review process have been fundamental to managing and improving performance. 

“Monitoring recognised key performance indicators - particularly door-to-device times and complication rates - is central to our unit’s continuous improvement processes,” he said.

“Data provided by VCOR since commencement of the PCI program are extremely important not just for Bendigo Health, but also for future healthcare system delivery planning.

“We acknowledge and are very grateful for the continuing partnership between Bendigo Health and the Victorian Cardiac Outcomes Registry. Without VCOR, furthering cardiac intervention in Bendigo Health may not have reached its current level of maturity and service delivery that matches metropolitan hospitals today”.

For more information about VCOR, please contact Louise Kelly, Senior Project Officer, at [email protected]