Joint Society Document Offers Cardiac EP Guidance During COVID-19

The ACC Electrophysiology (EP) Section along with the Heart Rhythm Society COVID-19 Task Force, and the American Heart Association's Electrocardiography and Arrhythmias Committee of the Council on Clinical Cardiology, has released new guidance for cardiac electrophysiology during COVID-19.

The document, which is broken down in 10 key areas, highlights the scope of the program and addresses "potential risks of exposure to patients, physicians, allied health care staff, industry representatives and hospital administrators." It also looks at the impact of COVID-19 on cardiac arrhythmias; addresses triage of procedures based on screening and personal protective equipment; and provides guidance for managing invasive and noninvasive EP procedures, clinic visits and cardiac implantable electronic device (CIED) interrogation. Additionally, resource conservation, remote device monitoring, telehealth and digital health are also discussed.

Some specific recommendations include: minimizing the number of individuals rounding; limiting exposure of fellow trainees and EP allied professionals with patients who have suspected or confirmed COVID-19 infection; conducting many EP consults without a face-to-face visit; postponing nonurgent or nonemergent procedures to later dates; and converting clinic visits and in-person CIED checks to telehealth and remote checks whenever feasible.

"At this unprecedented time, it is important that patients feel that physicians and health care systems are not abandoning them. Many patients with arrhythmias are among the sickest of those with cardiovascular disease," the authors note.

Clinical Topics: Arrhythmias and Clinical EP, Cardiovascular Care Team, COVID-19 Hub, Implantable Devices, SCD/Ventricular Arrhythmias, Atrial Fibrillation/Supraventricular Arrhythmias

Keywords: Electrophysiology, Electrophysiologic Techniques, Cardiac, COVID-19, Coronavirus, Triage, American Heart Association, Cardiac Electrophysiology, Arrhythmias, Cardiac, Telemedicine, Electrocardiography

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