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in progress

Development timeline: November 2018 – June 2020

A new clinical practice flowchart for the management of acute Atrial Fibrillation (AF) will be adapted from the National Heart Foundation and Cardiac Society of Australia and New Zealand’s guideline for the diagnosis and management of Atrial Fibrillation 2018 (the guideline). 

Why are we developing this guidance?

Through a study at a major Melbourne tertiary hospital we became aware of variation in the management and treatment of AF and atrial flutter in emergency departments. 

The study, presented at the 2018 Cardiac Society of Australia and New Zealand (CSANZ) Annual Conference, showed the following variations in care:

  • prolonged length of stay
  • frequent re-presentations to the emergency department
  • poor compliance with existing guidance to manage AF, including rhythm and rate control
  • use of Direct Current Cardioversion (DCR), and
  • prescribing anticoagulant therapy to prevent stroke. 

This flowchart will summarise the guidance to increase awareness and compliance with the best practice management of AF in the emergency department. 

Scope of guidance

The flowchart will guide management of acute atrial fibrillation/atrial flutter in hospital emergency departments. 

Expert working group membership

Dr Mark Horrigan Project Lead- AF in ED Project Austin Health
Prof. Peter Cameron       Clinical Lead Emergency Care Clinical Network
Emergency Physician 
Alfred Health 
Dr. Thomas Chan Emergency Care Clinical Network
Emergency Physician    
Austin Health
Alastair Foster AF Project Officer Safer Care Victoria
A/Prof. Peter Hand

Clinical Lead Stroke Clinical Network

Alfred Health
A/Prof. Peter Hunter Clinical Lead Care of the Older Person Network
Alfred Health
Prof Danny Liew Cardiac Clinical Network
Consultant Physician
Alfred Health and Monash University
A/Prof. Arthur Nasis Clinical Lead Cardiac Clinical Network
Monash Health
Dervla O’ Regan Project Lead, Cardiac Clinical Network Safer Care Victoria
Gemma Ricketson Manager – Cardiac, Stroke and Renal Networks Safer Care Victoria
Dr Dan Turner Rural emergency physician Mildura Base Hospital
Prof Andrew Wilson Chief Medical Officer and Cardiac Clinical Network
Safer Care Victoria


Get in touch

Centre of Clinical Excellence - Chronic
Safer Care Victoria

Page last updated: 11 Nov 2020

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