Saint Francis Medical Center’s Heart Hospital has again received full accreditation with PCI from the Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care (SCPC). Saint Francis was first accredited in 2009. The reaccreditation is valid for three years.
Hospitals that have received SCPC accreditation have achieved a higher level of expertise in dealing with patients who arrive with symptoms of a heart attack. They emphasize the importance of standardized diagnostic and treatment programs that provide more efficient and effective evaluation as well as more appropriate and rapid treatment of patients with chest pain and other heart attack symptoms. They also serve as a point of entry into the healthcare system to evaluate and treat other medical problems, and they help to promote a healthier lifestyle in an attempt to reduce the risk factors for heart attack.
Saint Francis’ accreditation as a Chest Pain Center goes above and beyond the required standards to include a full Cycle II with PCI designation, a procedure commonly known as an angioplasty to treat blocked arteries of the heart. “This designation essentially means that if you are having a heart attack, our goal is to have you in our cardiac catheterization lab receiving a possibly lifesaving interventional treatment, like balloon angioplasty or stent placement, within 90 minutes of arriving at our Emergency Department,” says Duc T. Nguyen, DO, cardiologist at Saint Francis.
“The Chest Pain Center’s protocol-driven and systematic approach to patient management allows physicians to reduce time to treatment during the critical early stages of a heart attack, when treatments are most effective, and to better monitor patients when it is not clear whether they are having a coronary event,” says Nguyen. “Such observation helps ensure a patient is neither sent home too early nor needlessly admitted.”
Heart attacks are the leading cause of death in the United States, with 600,000 people dying annually of heart disease. More than five million Americans visit hospitals each year with chest pain. SCPC’s goal is to significantly reduce the mortality rate of these patients by teaching the public to recognize and react to the early symptoms of a possible heart attack, reduce the time that it takes to receive treatment, and increase the accuracy and effectiveness of treatment.
With the increase in chest pain centers came the need to establish standards designed to improve the consistency and quality of care provided to patients. SCPC’s accreditation process ensures that centers meet or exceed quality-of-care measures in acute cardiac medicine.
The Accredited Chest Pain Center at Saint Francis has demonstrated its expertise and commitment to quality patient care by meeting or exceeding a wide set of stringent criteria and undergoing an onsite review by a team of SPCP’s accreditation review specialists. Key areas in which an Accredited Chest Pain Center must demonstrate expertise include the following:
- Integrating the emergency department with the local emergency medical system
- Assessing, diagnosing, and treating patients quickly
- Effectively treating patients with low risk for acute coronary syndrome and no assignable cause for their symptoms
- Continually seeking to improve processes and procedures
- Ensuring the competence and training of Accredited Chest Pain Center personnel
- Maintaining organizational structure and commitment
- Having a functional design that promotes optimal patient care
- Supporting community outreach programs that educate the public to promptly seek medical care if they display symptoms of a possible heart attack
For more information about the Medical Center’s Chest Pain Center Cycle II accreditation with PCI, call the Heart Institute at 573-331-5157.
Saint Francis Medical Center’s Heart Institute provides advanced diagnostics, leading-edge cardiac intervention and surgeries, emergency care, cardiac rehabilitation, risk assessments for heart disease, vascular disease screenings and educational programs. Saint Francis is a leader in cardiac innovations, being the region’s first hospital to perform cardiac catheterization, and continues to lead the way in heart care with state-of-the-art procedures.
The Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care (SCPC) is an international not-for-profit organization that focuses on transforming cardiovascular care by assisting facilities in their effort to create communities of excellence that bring together quality, cost and patient satisfaction. As the only cross-specialty organization, SCPC provides the support needed for individual hospitals and hospital systems to effectively bridge existing gaps in treatment by providing the tools, education and support necessary to successfully navigate the changing face of healthcare. For more information on SCPC, accreditation and certification opportunities, visit www.scpcp.org, or call toll free 877-271-4176.