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Chest Pain Center Reaccredited at Lutheran Hospital

Lutheran obtains the region’s first, most advanced accreditation with cycle IV

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Friday, Dec. 28, 2012) – Lutheran Hospital has reinforced its position as the cardiac leader in northeastern Indiana by receiving the most advanced chest pain center accreditation, cycle IV. Lutheran is the first facility in the region to achieve the designation. Lutheran officially received full cycle IV accreditation (*with percutaneous coronary intervention) from the accreditation review committee of the Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care. This three-year reaccreditation expires December 6, 2015.

“Lutheran has participated and has achieved all four cycles of accreditation since the Society began accrediting facilities,” said Latesa Conley, chest pain center coordinator, Lutheran Hospital. “Each cycle adds new standards to be met for reaccreditation. The cycles incorporate eight key elements and specific criteria, so we’re proud to say Lutheran has advanced as far as possible in this ongoing process.”

Lutheran received initial cycle I accreditation January 16, 2004. At that time, it became the first accredited chest pain center in northeastern Indiana and only the 27th in the nation.

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.

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.

An accredited 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 or not they are having a coronary event. Such observation helps ensure that patients are neither sent home too early nor needlessly admitted.

The Accredited Chest Pain Center at Lutheran Hospital 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 SCPC’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

*About Percutaneous Coronary Intervention

Percutaneous coronary intervention (angioplasty or stent placement), as opposed to clot-busting drugs, is the path of choice for physicians at Lutheran Hospital treating patients who arrive at the emergency department with a heart attack. PCI is performed in the cardiac catheterization lab.

About the Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care

The 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 brings 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 1-877-271-4176.

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