Lebanon, PA - Good Samaritan Hospital has received the Get With The GuidelinesSM Heart Failure (GWTG–Heart Failure) Gold Performance Achievement Award from the American Heart Association. The recognition signifies that Good Samaritan has reached an aggressive goal of treating heart failure patients with 85% compliance for at least 24 months to core standard levels of care as outlined by the American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology secondary prevention guidelines for heart failure patients.
Get With The Guidelines 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 to prevent future hospitalizations.
Under GWTG–Heart Failure, 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. Good Samaritan has successfully implemented these quality measures for 24 months.
“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, M.D., 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.”
According to the American Heart Association, about 5.2 million people suffer from heart failure. Statistics also show each year more than 57,000 people will die of heart failure.
“Good Samaritan is dedicated to making our care for heart failure patients among the best in the country and implementing the American Heart Association’s Get With The Guidelines–Heart Failure program will help us accomplish this goal by making it easier for our professionals to improve the long-term outcome for these patients,” said Julie Miksit, assistant vice president of cardiovascular services at Good Samaritan.
GWTG–Heart Failure helps the Good Samaritan staff develop and implement acute and secondary prevention guideline processes. The program includes quality-improvement measures such as care maps, discharge protocols, standing orders and measurement tools. This quick and efficient use of guideline tools will enable Good Samaritan to improve the quality of care it provides heart failure patients, save lives and ultimately, reduce healthcare costs by lowering the recurrence of heart attacks. (###)