James Cook University ISSN 1445-6354
Objectives: The purpose of this study was to determine whether patients in a rural population with documented history of atrial fibrillation (AF) are prescribed antithrombotic treatment according to recognised guidelines.
Background: AF is a major risk factor for ischaemic stroke and a common presentation in General Practice. Scoring systems to guide antithrombotic treatment have been available since 1996,with the CHA2DS2-VASc in current use; however, little is known about adherence to guidelines in rural General Practice.
Methods: A retrospective cohort study of inpatients was performed at a rural country hospital in South Australia. All patients with an ICD-10 CM code at the time of discharge were selected from June 2008 to July 2013. This included both newly diagnosed AF as well cases with existing history of AF.
Results: Among the 59 patients studied, 77% of patients received appropriate anticoagulation according to CHADS2 score and 83 % according to CHA2DS2-VASC score.
Conclusion: This study confirms that the guidelines recommendations are routinely followed in clinical practice in this rural population.