Atrial fibrillation clinical guidelines and resources
Atrial fibrillation resources for health professionals, including clinical guidelines and tools and information for patients.
Online professional development
Common heart rhythm problems
This course is 60 minutes of online professional development for nurses and other health professionals working in primary care. It provides a basic understanding of some common arrhythmias, including atrial fibrillation. It outlines the risk factors, symptoms, treatment and management of these conditions.
Clinical guidelines and tools
2018 CSANZ atrial fibrillation guideline
The 2018 guidelines for the diagnosis and management of atrial fibrillation were developed by the Cardiac Society of Australia and New Zealand (CSANZ) and the National Heart Foundation of Australia.
The guidelines are endorsed by:
- The Stroke Foundation
- Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (ACSQHC)
- Australian and New Zealand Society of Cardiac and Thoracic Surgeons (ANZSCTS)
- The Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM)
- The Council of Remote Area Nurses of Australia (CRANA)
- Australian College of Nursing (ACN)
- Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP)
The below tables and algorithms appear in the 2018 AF guidelines.
- CHA2DS2-VA score (PDF)
- Figure 1. Management of atrial high-rate episodes (PDF)
- Figure 2. Electrical cardioversion (PDF)
- Figure 3. Acute rate control of atrial fibrillation with rapid ventricular response (PDF)
- Figure 4. Chronic rate control of atrial fibrillation with rapid ventricular response (PDF)
- Figure 5. Long term rhythm control strategies (PDF)
- Figure 6. Stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation (PDF)
- Figure 7. Management of bleeding for non-vitamin K antagonist oral anticoagulant treated patients (PDF)
- Figure 8. Combining anticoagulants and antiplatelet agents (PDF)
- Figure 9. Fundamentals of integrated care in the management of atrial fibrillation (PDF)
2020 European Society of Cardiology AF guidelines
2020 ESC Guidelines for the diagnosis and management of atrial fibrillation developed in collaboration with the European Association of Cardio-Thoracic Surgery (EACTS): The Task Force for the diagnosis and management of atrial fibrillation of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Developed with the special contribution of the European Heart Rhythm Association (EHRA) of the ESC.
Resources for patients
Booklet on Staying well with atrial fibrillation
The Heart Foundation has developed a 30-page booklet for people living with atrial fibrillation and their whānau. It is available as a PDF or in hard copy.Download the PDF Order a copy from our website
Pulse checks – A5 flyer
A flyer which explains to patients how to take their pulse and when to seek further advice from a doctor or nurse.
There is a dedicated atrial fibrillation section on our website for people living with AF and their families. It includes information on diagnosis and treatment, the emotional impact of AF, and living well with the condition.
We also have a page explaining heart rate and pulse checks, and a video on how to take a pulse.Download the PDF
Atrial fibrillation YouTube playlist
We have a playlist of 13 videos about atrial fibrillation for people living with the condition. These videos include information on:
- diagnosis and treatment
- the emotional impact of AF and related depression and anxiety
- exercising with AF
- living with AF
- and top tips for managing the condition.
The videos are presented by a GP, health psychologist, exercise physiologist and someone living with atrial fibrillation, giving a range of different views on AF.
A pamphlet explaining what's involved in getting a pacemaker and how it might affect a person’s lifestyle.View our YouTube playlistDownload the pamplet