I am
heartfoundation.org.au|Helpline 13 11 12

Can we mass screen for AF among those aged over 75 in Australia?

Professor Clara Chow, Institution: University of Sydney

2019 Vanguard Grant

Years funded: 2020-2021


Atrial fibrillation (AF) is common, especially among the elderly, and carries a high associated risk of stroke. Prevalence of AF increases with age, and studies outside of Australia suggest screening of populations ≥75 years yields detection rates of new AF of around 5%, with higher detection rates in patients with co-existing risk factors, monitored for longer periods of time and using methods that obtains a medical quality ECG tracing, such as with a handheld device. Several national and international guidelines are now encouraging AF screening; however, implementation of these guidelines still faces two challenges, developing a sustainable strategy for AF screening in populations and ensuring appropriate treatment for newly diagnosed AF. There are approximately 1.5 million people in Australia over the age of 75, and their life expectancy is over 10 years. Is a mass population approach for AF screening in this patient population feasible?

The objective of this research is to examine a strategy of AF screening for over 75s, that is integrated with cardiac services - centres that currently monitor patients with pacemakers and that could arrange rapid and appropriate access to AF management services if required. We propose to use a targeted health promotion campaign to enrol community-dwellers aged 75 or older. We will provide mobile handheld ECG devices with training and couple this with a reminder system to facilitate daily ECG monitoring and sending of data to the cardiovascular centre. Within the cardiovascular centre we will implement a clinical algorithm aligned with current AF management guidelines for suspected AF or newly diagnosed AF to access AF management services.

This research will pilot the strategy and examine participant acceptability, AF detection rate and costs of the program.

You might also be interested in

Research Directory

Research Directory

A program of research to improve ACCESS to cardiovascular care

A program of research to improve ACCESS to cardiovascular care

Professor Robyn Clark, Institution: Flinders University...

Altering the rehabilitation environment to improve stroke survivor activity (AREISSA)

Altering the rehabilitation environment to improve stroke survivor activity (AREISSA)

Assistant Professor Neil Spratt, Institution: The University of Newcastle...

Constructing Aboriginal health: a review of cardiovascular research, 1933-2014

Constructing Aboriginal health: a review of cardiovascular research, 1933-2014

Ms Joanne Luke, Institution: University of Melbourne...

Exercise and brain volume loss after stroke

Exercise and brain volume loss after stroke

Professor Amy Brodtmann, Institution: Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health...

Growing healthy hearts - how passive smoke exposure and elevated blood pressure early in life impacts adult cardiovascular health

Growing healthy hearts - how passive smoke exposure and elevated blood pressure early in life impacts adult cardiovascular health

Growing healthy hearts - how passive smoke exposure and elevated blood pressure early in life impacts adult cardiovascular health

Dr Costan Magnussen, Institution: University of Tasmania...

Lipid disorders in patients at high cardiovascular disease risk

Lipid disorders in patients at high cardiovascular disease risk

Dr Esther Ooi, Institution: University of Western Australia...

Promoting active, healthy lifestyles among women at key life stages

Promoting active, healthy lifestyles among women at key life stages

Associate Professor Verity Cleland, Institution: University of Tasmania...

Reducing population salt consumption in Victoria

Reducing population salt consumption in Victoria

Reducing population salt consumption in Victoria

Professor Bruce Neal, Institution: University of New South Wales...

Starting early – Increasing young children’s physical activity

Starting early – Increasing young children’s physical activity

Associate Professor Hayley Christian, Institution: University of Western Australia...

Heart Health Check Toolkit

Heart Health Check Toolkit

Heart Age Calculator

Heart Age Calculator

Heart Age Calculator

Could you be at risk of heart disease? Get your estimated heart age now....

Environment, climate change and heart health

Environment, climate change and heart health

Environment, climate change and heart health

Information on how air pollution, heatwaves and bushfires can impact heart health, and what you can do to look after yourself. ...

End of Financial Year Tax Receipt

End of Financial Year Tax Receipt

End of Financial Year Tax Receipt

Looking to claim your donations in your tax return this financial year?...

Research Directory

Research Directory

Spinach hummus with Turkish toasts

Spinach hummus with Turkish toasts

10 minutes
Serves 8

Italian recipes

Italian recipes

Italian recipes

Find heart healthy Italian recipes....

Finding a new purpose: Geoff Lester’s heart story

Finding a new purpose: Geoff Lester’s heart story

Finding a new purpose: Geoff Lester’s heart story

Dr Geoff Lester, 35, is training to be a cardiologist at Coffs Harbour Hospital. He has survived three high-risk open-heart surgeries and two strokes....

Get your family moving

Get your family moving

Get your family moving

Get your kids active and set them up for healthier habits into adulthood....

Baking recipes

Baking recipes

Baking recipes

Find heart healthy baking recipes ...

Overcoming uncertainty: Bianca Beetham’s heart story

Overcoming uncertainty: Bianca Beetham’s heart story

Overcoming uncertainty: Bianca Beetham’s heart story

Bianca Beetham is 24 years old and lives in Sydney. She is currently waiting for her first open-heart surgery after being diagnosed with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy five years ago....

From diagnosis at 37 to heart surgery, rehab and now

From diagnosis at 37 to heart surgery, rehab and now

From diagnosis at 37 to heart surgery, rehab and now

Claude Lam, Open heart surgery survivor...

Asian recipes

Asian recipes

Asian recipes

Find heart healthy Asian recipes....

Atrial Fibrillation (AF) clinical resources

Atrial Fibrillation (AF) clinical resources

Resources and clinical information for health professionals...

Moroccan spiced fish with couscous and raisin salad

Moroccan spiced fish with couscous and raisin salad

10 minutes
Serves 4

Remember a loved one with a tribute

Remember a loved one with a tribute

Remember a loved one with a tribute

Honour the life of a loved one with a donation to the Heart Foundation. Your donation offers hope for Australian hearts....

Salmon Shakshuka

Salmon Shakshuka

Salmon Shakshuka

20 minutes
Serves 4

What is heart disease?

What is heart disease?

What is heart disease?

Heart disease is the broad term for conditions that affect the structure and function of the heart muscle. ...

Breakfast tacos

Breakfast tacos

Breakfast tacos

5 minutes
Serves 1

Is salt bad for your heart?

Is salt bad for your heart?

Is salt bad for your heart?

Most Australians are eating more than the recommended amounts and this can cause health problems....

Salmon Tikka Parcels with Rice Salad

Salmon Tikka Parcels with Rice Salad

Salmon Tikka Parcels with Rice Salad

15 minutes
Serves 4

Driving Best Practice CVD Prevention in a Post-COVID World

Driving Best Practice CVD Prevention in a Post-COVID World

Driving Best Practice CVD Prevention in a Post-COVID World

Clinical resources: Coronary heart disease and mental health

Clinical resources: Coronary heart disease and mental health

The prevalence of depression is high in patients with coronary heart disease (CHD)....

Feelings and emotions after a heart attack

Feelings and emotions after a heart attack

Feelings and emotions after a heart attack

This is a guide to how you might be feeling after a heart attack. ...

Fundraise to save Australian hearts

Fundraise to save Australian hearts

Fundraise to save Australian hearts

Join our community of fundraisers who are committed to taking action to fight heart disease....

For Professionals: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples information and resources

For Professionals: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples information and resources

For Professionals: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples information and resources

Resources for providing best practice cardiovascular care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples....

Blueprint for an active Australia 

Blueprint for an active Australia 

Blueprint for an active Australia 

The Blueprint for an active Australia provides evidence-based actions to help address physical inactivity....

Snack recipes

Snack recipes

Snack recipes

Search for healthy snack ideas...

Our supporters 

Our supporters 

Our supporters 

Working together to save Australian hearts...

Chest x-ray for heart disease

Chest x-ray for heart disease

Chest x-ray for heart disease

This test can help your doctor determine if there is anything wrong with your heart....