FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Contact: Colleen Valdini
Public & External Affairs Manager
VP, Public & External Affairs
Phone: (631) 376-4104
Date: September 29, 2010
West Islip, NY – The American Heart Association’s Get With the Guidelines ® (GWTG)–Heart Failure Silver Performance Achievement Award has been given to Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center. This recognition signifies that Good Samaritan has reached an aggressive goal of treating heart failure patients for more than 12 consecutive months with 85 percent or higher adherence to core-standard levels of care as outlined in the American Heart Association (AHA)/American College of Cardiology guidelines. Previously, Good Samaritan earned the AHA’s Bronze Performance Achievement Award.
“Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center is dedicated to providing the best care for heart failure patients in the country, and implementing the American Heart Association’s Get With the Guidelines ® –Heart Failure program will help accomplish this by making it easier for professionals to improve the long-term outcome for these patients,” said Good Samaritan’s Vice President of Care and Quality Management Susan Dries, RN.
According to the AHA, about 5.7 million people suffer from heart failure. Statistics also show that each year more than 292,200 people will die as a result of heart failure. GWTG provides hospital staff with tools that follow proven procedures in caring for heart failure patients to prevent future hospitalizations. According to the guidelines, heart failure patients are started on aggressive risk-reduction therapies such as cholesterol-lowering drugs, beta blockers, ACE inhibitors, aspirin, diuretics and anticoagulants in the hospital. They also receive alcohol/drug use and thyroid management counseling, as well as referrals for cardiac rehabilitation before being discharged.
“The full implementation of national heart failure guideline-recommended care is a critical step in preventing recurrent hospitalizations and prolonging the lives of heart failure patients,” said Gregg C. Fonarow, MD, national chairman of the GWTG Steering Committee and director of Ahmanson-UCLA Cardiomyopathy Center. “The goal of the American Heart Association’s Get With the Guidelines® program is to help hospitals like Good Samaritan implement appropriate evidence-based care and protocols that will reduce disability and the number of deaths in these patients.”
The GWTG–Heart Failure guidelines help the hospital’s staff develop and implement acute and secondary prevention processes. The program includes quality-improvement measures such as care maps, discharge protocols, standing orders and measurement tools. The quick and efficient use of guideline tools will enable Good Samaritan to further improve the care it provides to heart failure patients, save lives and, ultimately, reduce health care costs by lowering the recurrence of heart attacks.
For more information about Good Samaritan’s award-winning cardiology services, please call (631) 376-4444.
Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center is a 537-bed (including 100 nursing home beds), voluntary, not-for-profit hospital located in West Islip. The medical center, which has more than 4,500 employees and almost 900 physicians on staff, had more than 30,000 patient admissions and more than 100,000 emergency room visits in 2009. Good Samaritan is a member of Catholic Health Services of Long Island. Visit the website at www.good-samaritan-hospital.org.
Good Samaritan provides more than $54 million in community service and charity care each year. The medical center supplies residents with the tools necessary to maintain good health. This includes community lectures, screenings, health fairs and other community programs and services.