The Good Samaritan Health System has received the Get With the Guidelines® (GWTG) Heart Failure Gold Plus Performance Achievement Award from the American Heart Association (AHA) for its excellence in the treatment of patients with heart failure. This award is given only to hospitals that achieve 85 percent or higher adherence to all GWTG Hearth Failure Performance Indicators for two or more consecutive 12-month intervals and have achieved 75 percent or higher compliance with four of nine GWTG Heart Failure Quality Measures to improve quality of patient care and outcomes.
GWTG is a quality improvement initiative that provides hospital staff with tools that follow proven evidence-based guidelines and procedures in caring for heart failure patients. According to the AHA, about 5.2 million people suffer from heart failure and each year more than 57,000 people will die of heart failure.
“The Good Samaritan Health System team is to be commended for this commitment to improving the quality of care for their patients,” said Lee H. Schwamm, M.D., chair of the GWTG National Steering Committee and director of the TeleStroke and Acute Stroke Services at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. “The goal of the American Hearth Association’s GWTG program is to help healthcare providers implement appropriate evidence-based care and protocols that will reduce disability and death and improve the quality of life for patients.”
“Our cardiac program is dedicated to making care for heart failure patients among the best in the country. We will continue in our efforts and build off of the success of this award by continued implementation of the GWTG program, which allowed us to accomplish this goal,” said Julie Miksit, assistant vice president for cardiovascular services at The Good Samaritan Hospital. “By using GWTG processes, we are able to improve the quality of care we provide to heart failure patients, save lives and, ultimately, reduce healthcare costs by avoiding re-hospitalization.”
The average 30 day readmission rate for heart failure in the United States is 24%. Year to date readmission rate at Good Samaritan Health System is 12% for 2009. Following the standards of practice in the GWTG program helped achieve this drop in readmissions.
For 120 years, the Good Samaritan Health System has served the health care needs of Lebanon County. The Good Samaritan Hospital is a modern, fully-equipped, fully-accredited 172-bed acute care facility that offers complete inpatient and outpatient care, as well as an inpatient rehabilitation program. The health system also provides services at many other sites located throughout Lebanon County.