Composition, structure, and function of heart teams: a joint position paper of the ACVC, EAPCI, EACTS, and EACTA focused on the management of patients with complex coronary artery disease requiring myocardial revascularization

Eur Heart J Acute Cardiovasc Care. 2021 Mar 5;10(1):83-93. doi: 10.1093/ehjacc/zuaa013.

Abstract

Contemporary cardiovascular medicine is complex, dynamic, and interactive. Therefore, multidisciplinary dialogue between different specialists is required to deliver optimal and patient-centred care. This has led to the concept of explicit collaborations of different specialists caring for patients with complex cardiovascular diseases-that is 'heart teams'. These teams are particularly valuable to minimize referral bias and improve guideline adherence as so to be responsive to patient preferences, needs, and values but may be challenging to coordinate, especially in the acute setting. This position paper-jointly developed by four cardiovascular associations-is intended to provide conceptual and practical considerations for the composition, structure, and function of multidisciplinary teams. It focuses on patients with complex coronary artery diseases in both elective and urgent setting and provide guidance on how to implement the heart team both in chronic and in acute coronary syndromes patients, including cases with mechanical complications and haemodynamic instability; it also discuss strategies for clear and transparent patient communication and provision of a patient-centric approach. Finally, gaps in evidence and research perspectives in this context are discussed.

Keywords: Coronary artery disease; Heart team; Multidisciplinary decision-making.