UTHSCT receives awards from American Heart Association for its care of patients with coronary artery disease, heart failure

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The University of Texas Health Science Center at Tyler has been recognized for its care of patients with coronary artery disease and heart failure by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s “Get With the Guidelines” program.

On Wednesday, June 3, Margie Hughes, RN, quality improvement director for AHA’s South Central Affiliate, presented UTHSCT President Dr. Kirk A. Calhoun with two awards: a Gold Award recognizing the Health Science Center’s care of patients with coronary artery disease and a Silver Award recognizing its care of patients with heart failure.

In the photo to the left, are (left to right) Margie Hughes, RN, of the American Heart Association; Joan Hall, quality specialist; UTHSCT President Dr. Kirk Calhoun; Shelley Perkins, quality specialist; Brenda Lee, MSN, UTHSCT’s director of Healthcare Quality; and Janice Jordan, MSN, senior quality specialist.

UTHSCT is one of just 15 hospitals in Texas and 106 hospitals in the nation to receive the Gold Award from the AHA/ASA in coronary artery disease.

Get With the Guidelines is a quality-improvement program that helps hospitals ensure that patients with coronary artery disease, heart failure, and stroke consistently receive care that meets the latest guidelines and recommendations.

“This award is a result of UTHSCT’s commitment to providing excellent patient care. We follow these important guidelines to make sure our patients receive the best care,” Dr. Calhoun said.

To qualify for a Gold Award, hospitals must treat and discharge at least 85 percent of their cardiac or stroke patients – for two years – using the latest AHA/ASA guidelines.

To qualify for a Silver Award, hospitals must meet these guidelines for one year.

Each hospital is evaluated using criteria based on medical data showing the best way to treat these conditions.

According to the AHA, 80,000 lives could be saved each year if the guidelines for coronary artery disease patients were implemented nationwide.

For 60 years, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Tyler has provided excellent patient care and cutting-edge treatments, specializing in pulmonary disease, cancer, heart disease, primary care, and the disciplines that support them. With an operating budget of more than $125 million and biomedical research funding that exceeds $10 million annually, UTHSCT has a major economic impact on East Texas. Its two medical residency programs – in family medicine and occupational medicine – provide doctors for many communities in East Texas and beyond.

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