AHA Launches Data Registry to Track Stroke and Heart Disease in Context of COVID-19    

  • COVID-19
  • Stroke

Raising concern that COVID-19 may have effects on neurovascular health, retrospective studies and anecdotal reports report that individuals with COVID-19 may present to health care facilities with heart failure, cardiogenic shock, stroke, and lethal arrhythmias. There is also strong evidence for adverse cardiovascular outcomes in people who had COVID-19. Other anecdotal reports have suggested that there has been an increase in stroke at their health care center during the COVID-19 pandemic. Together these reports raise concerns for adverse neuro- and cardiovascular effects of COVID19 as well as the question of whether people with neuro- and cardiovascular disease may be at higher risk from COVID-19. 

These reports, however, are of limited quality because of the lack of consistent data collection and indication bias for laboratory testing. Several reports are from single health care centers, making the information difficult to generalize to the wider population. 

As physicians, scientists, and researchers worldwide struggle to understand the pandemic, the American Heart Association is developing a novel registry to aggregate data and aid research on the disease, treatment protocols and risk factors tied to adverse cardiovascular outcomes.

This multicenter registry will collect biomarkers, clinical data, and neuro- and cardiovascular outcomes in people who have had COVID-19. The registry will focus on granular data collection from centers that routinely test biomarkers in COVID-19 patients.

The AHA’s new, free COVID19 CVD registry powered by its Get With The Guidelines (GWTG) hospital quality-improvement program, will be available to more than 2,400 hospitals currently participating in a GWTG module starting in May. In addition, aggregate data will be available to researchers through the Association’s Institute for Precision Cardiovascular Medicine.

”Having sufficient data is the first step to understanding the impact of COVID-19 on cardiovascular health,“ said John Warner, M.D., FAHA, chair of the quality oversight committee and  past volunteer president of the American Heart Association and executive vice president for Health System Affairs at the University of Texas Southwestern Health System in Dallas, Texas. “As a trusted resource for data and research, with an entry point in more than 2,400 U.S. hospitals, the American Heart Association is uniquely positioned to gather data quickly and accurately.” 

Get With The Guidelines (GWTG) is a hospital-based quality improvement program from the American Heart Association with tools and resources to increase adherence to the latest research-based guidelines.  The premise of the GWTG programs is when medical professionals apply the most up-to-date evidence-based treatment guidelines, patient outcomes improved. 

1.  Guo T, Fan Y, Chen M, et al. Cardiovascular implications of fatal outcomes of patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). JAMA Cardiol. 2020;10.1001/jamacardio.2020.1017.
2.  Zhou F, Yu T, Du R, et al. Clinical course and risk factors for mortality of adult inpatients with COVID-19 in Wuhan, China: a retrospective cohort study. Lancet. 2020;10.1016/s0140-6736(20)30566-3.
3.  Driggin E, Madhavan MV, Bikdeli B, et al. Cardiovascular considerations for patients, health care workers, and health systems during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) Pandemic. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2020;10.1016/j.jacc.2020.03.031.
4.  Clerkin KJ, Fried JA, Raikhelkar J, et al. Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and cardiovascular disease. Circulation. 2020;10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.120.046941.

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