Sudden cardiac death is a major public health problem with approximately 180,000 to 400,000 deaths annually. Because of the low efficacy and success rates of out-of- hospital resuscitation, a high priority has been set to try and identify individuals at risk for sudden cardiac death prior to the event. If this can be done, there are treatments that can be instituted to mitigate this risk. However, despite decades of research, and significant investments of time, effort, and research dollars, there is not yet an ideal or even acceptable approach to risk stratification for sudden cardiac death. One approach that could be initiated to engender more rapid progress in this area is to promote better coordination among the various stakeholders - investigators, government agencies, and industry. Although all are vested in the need for risk stratification, each group has different sets of priorities and therefore approaches the problem from different perspectives. The Path to Improved Risk Stratification, NFP is a not-for-profit think tank founded by Dr. Jeffrey Goldberger whose mission is to serve as a focal point to help organize a rational, coordinated plan for developing, evaluating, and implementing risk stratification strategies for prevention of sudden cardiac death. The Path to Improved Risk Stratification, NFP has organized annual single day meetings in Chicago for the last eight years with: 1) physician leaders in the area of risk stratification, clinical trials in prevention of sudden cardiac death, epidemiology, and health economics;2) representatives from the relevant government agencies;3) representatives from industry. The meeting agendas are designed to identify important gaps in our knowledge and to strategize how those gaps can best be filled. These meetings have resulted in new efforts in risk stratification and have helped guide some clinical trials that have been in development. The agenda for each meeting is to evaluate progress from the prior meeting, review new information relevant to risk stratification, discuss issues related to ongoing clinical trials, obtain updates on planning of new trials, review scientific/statistical/economics issues related to risk stratification, and explore new areas that are gaps in our knowledge base. Given the vastness of the information that needs to be understood to advance the field of risk stratification, this effort provides an important sounding board for those involved and encourages collaboration and the development of innovative approaches.
The Risk Stratification for Sudden Cardiac Death annual conference will deal with issues related to identifying patients at risk for sudden cardiac death prior to suffering this event. This is a major public health problem with approximately 180000 to 400000 deaths annually. Because of the low efficacy and success rates of out-of-hospital resuscitation, a high priority has been set to try and identify individuals at risk for sudden cardac death prior to the event.