Medical Center of South Arkansas Receives Chest Pain Center Accreditation
Rachel Scriber – Director of Marketing – Medical Center of South Arkansas – September 24, 2009
Medical Center of South Arkansas – El Dorado, AR recently received full Cycle II accreditation with PCI from the Accreditation Review Committee of the Society of Chest Pain Centers. MCSA is one of only two centers in the state to have achieved this accreditation.
Medical Director of the Chest Pain Center, Rakesh K. Sharma, MD, FACC, FACP, states “I am thankful and proud of the hospital team and Emergency Medical Services for developing the protocols necessary to deliver the best cardiac care for managing patients with chest pain and heart attack. Chest Pain Center accreditation is not possible without multidisciplinary cooperation and coordination between EMS, emergency medicine, primary care physicians, cardiologists and hospital administration. I am truly proud of this cooperation and coordination at every level. These multidisciplinary care pathways and quality assurance processes are in place for our patients and are continually monitored. This is great news for the community and physicians, as a well-tested formal process for chest pain management is in place at MCSA. The process starts with activation of EMS by a patient dialing 911 and ends when patient is discharged.”
Chest Pain Center Coordinators Candy Guinn, RN, Sonya Justice, BSN, RN, CEN and Whitney Tolbert MNSc, RN concur that “the accreditation process has brought multiple departments and disciplines together to work toward one common purpose, providing above standard cardiac care for members of our community, which include our own friends and family.”
Heart attacks are the leading cause of death in the United States, with 600,000 dying annually of heart disease. More than five million Americans visit hospitals each year with chest pain. The goal of the Society of Chest Pain Centers 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.
The 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 they are having a coronary event. Such observation helps ensure that a patient is neither sent home too early nor needlessly admitted.
Cardiologist Donald J. Voelker, MD, FACC, FSCAI also supports the accreditation and the processes in place to care for patients with symptoms of heart attack, “We are all extremely proud of achieving accreditation as a Chest Pain Center. MCSA had to meet stringent, nationally established set of criteria. All departments in the hospital worked together as a team to meet this elite mark of excellence. This demonstrates to the community MCSA’s commitment and dedication to providing exceptional cardiac care. You can know that if you or a loved one has a heart attack, you can trust your heart to our Chest Pain Center.”
With the rise of Chest Pain Centers came the need to establish standards designed to improve the consistency and quality of care provided to patients. The Society’s accreditation process insures centers meet or exceed quality-of-care measures in acute cardiac medicine.
The Chest Pain Center at Medical Center of South Arkansas has demonstrated its expertise and commitment to quality patient care by meeting or exceeding a wide set of stringent criteria and completing on-site evaluations by a review team from the Society of Chest Pain Centers. Key areas in which a Chest Pain Center must demonstrate expertise include:
- 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 Chest Pain Center personnel competency and training
- 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 the Society of Chest Pain Centers (SCPC)
The Society of Chest Pain Centers is a patient centric non-profit international professional organization focused upon improving care for patients with acute coronary syndromes and other related maladies. Established in 1998, the Society is dedicated to patient advocacy and focusing on ischemic heart disease. Central to its mission is the question, “What is right for the patient?” In answer, the Society promotes protocol based medicine, often delivered through a Chest Pain Center model to address the diagnosis and treatment of acute coronary syndromes, heart failure, and to promote the adoption of process improvement science by healthcare providers. To best fulfill this mission, the Society of Chest Pain Centers provides accreditation to facilities striving for optimum Chest Pain Center care. SCPC is headquartered in Columbus, Ohio.
The SCPC conducts an annual conference to provide the latest research and practical education for health care professionals. This year, the Medical Center of South Arkansas was recognized nationally at the Twelfth Congress of Chest Pain Centers Conference in Memphis, Tennessee. Chest Pain Center Coordinators Candy Guinn and Whitney Tolbert presented an abstract titled “Improving the Quality of Care for Acute Coronary Syndrome Patients: The Importance of Data Tracking”. This abstract highlighted how the accreditation process at MCSA uncovered opportunities for improvement and how data tracking provided objective information health care professionals utilize in their decision-making. Enhanced care of the ACS patient was the cumulative effect of the CPC accreditation process.
About Medical Center of South Arkansas
At the Medical Center of South Arkansas, we are committed to quality patient care. Our mission is to enhance the quality of life for the people of South Arkansas by delivering compassionate health care services utilizing a standard of excellence and by working together to promote optimal health, always seeking better ways to serve. Our Chest Pain Center accreditation reflects our mission in the quest of enhancing methods to meet the healthcare needs of our community. We are very proud of this level of dedication by our staff and physicians.
For more information on all cardiology services of MCSA, contact Rachel Scriber, 864-3245. For more information on the Society of Chest Pain Centers visit www.scpcp.org.