Dr. Edward Philbin

Dr. Michael Dailey

Getting the most appropriate care in the quickest manner to a patient suffering the most severe kind of heart attack, a STEMI, is the goal of the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline program.

For the past two years, Edward Philbin III, MD, the George E. Pataki Chair of the Division of Cardiology at Albany Med, and Michael Dailey, MD, Chief of Prehospital and Operational Medicine in the Department of Emergency Medicine and attending physician at Albany Med, and medical director, Regional Emergency Management Organization, brought together 12 Capital Region hospitals, all the regional EMS councils and the state Department of Health to study how well the Capital Region can provide that care. Drs. Philbin and Dailey had secured the funding to study this from Duke University, in a grant called the Mission: Lifeline Accelerator II project. Albany was one of 12 regions nationwide that were part of The Accelerator II Study.

For their work, Drs. Philbin and Dailey will receive the Donald Led Duke Heart Hero Award at the Capital Region Heart Ball on Saturday, March 3, at the New York State Museum in Albany.

The Mission: Lifeline study brought good news. The intervention resulted in significant improvements in the proportion of patients getting treatment within a crucial 90-minute window to restore blood flow. In the intervention, 74 percent of patients were treated on time vs. 67 percent prior to the intervention.

Improved treatment times corresponded with far fewer deaths. Among patients brought to PCI-capable centers (centers that can perform procedures) by EMS, in-hospital deaths fell to 2.3 percent during the program from 4.4 percent prior. Heart failure as a complication fell from 7.4 percent to 5 percent between the baseline and final quarters of the intervention.

“I’d like to congratulate Ed and Mike for this award, and congratulate the whole Capital Region that worked on this,” said Christopher Granger, M.D., cardiologist, professor of medicine, Duke University, and co-principal investigator on the Mission: Lifeline Accelerator II study. “This was a key part of the most ambitious program that’s ever been conducted in the U.S. to improve heart attack care. Albany and the Capital Region improved the time to treatment for patients being transferred from one hospital to a PCI (percutaneous coronary intervention) center to have the artery opened that caused the heart attack, and improved care for patients being brought directly to PCI centers. That means your neighbors, friends and community members are much more likely to survive a heart attack than they were three years ago.”

 “It is an honor to receive this award,” said Dr. Philbin. “More than that, it was an honor to work on this project with all of the stakeholders in the Capital Region. It was truly a collaborative effort, and the result is that it will save lives. In our world, real heroes are people who strive to prevent heart disease, or fight to survive and recover when it afflicts them. Because of the community’s commitment to Mission: Lifeline, we will be meeting more survivors.” 

“This award goes to so many people,” said Dr. Dailey. “EMS, hospitals, the Department of Health, the American Heart Association — everyone came together with the common goal of improving the way that heart attack is treated from the minute that someone calls 911 or arrives at a hospital. We often had to put aside our personal or corporate interests, and it has been profoundly moving to see people do that to improve the survival rate in the Capital Region.”

Dr. Edward Philbin is a cardiologist for adults with expertise in heart failure and heart transplant care. Dr. Philbin is a past president of the Founders Affiliate Board and the Northeast Board of the American Heart Association, and past president of the Capital Region Advisory Board of the American Heart Association. He received his medical degree from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and did his residencies at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Brighton, Mass., and the V.A. Hospital and Medical Center in West Roxbury, Mass. He had a clinical research fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. He and his family live in Loudonville, NY. 

Dr. Michael Dailey received his medical degree from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and did his residency in emergency medicine at the University of Pittsburgh. He is the medical director of the Regional Emergency Medical Organization, and several EMS agencies. He and his wife Robin live in Delmar with their two boys.

“Drs. Philbin and Dailey have led a project that is truly saving lives in the Capital Region,” said Kathy Lanni, chief community officer at SEFCU and chair of the Capital Region Advisory Board of the American Heart Association. “The American Heart Association congratulates them for making our community a safer and healthier place to live.”

Named for the late Donald Led Duke, the Donald Led Duke Heart Hero award honors a member or members of the community who make the area a better place to live.