Published on June 20, 2016

GMC-Davenport 30-Day Heart Attack Readmission Rate Among Lowest in Nation

Great news for Genesis heart attack patients. Genesis Medical Center, Davenport has the fourth lowest 30-day readmission rate in the country following heart attack. The readmission rate following heart attack care at Genesis is 13.7 percent. Only three hospitals had lower rates, according to data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). No other area hospitals were among the top 55 in the country and only one other Iowa hospital made the list.

CMS, the federal government’s healthcare administration agency, collected readmission rates in heart attack patients over a two-year period at health care institutions across the United States.

On average, the national readmission rate is 17 percent. Genesis heart care has consistently been recognized nationally for patient safety, quality and patient outcomes.

Dr. Shammas in the Cath Lab

Nicolas Shammas, M.D., FACC, performs a
procedure in the Genesis Cardiac Cath Lab,
where the blocked arteries of heart attack
patients are opened.

“Readmission rates are reflective of quality of care and patient safety,” said Marcia Brewer, Director, Heart and Vascular Services, GMC-Davenport. “Readmission rates also are a financial issue in the sense that readmissions have costs and Medicare and Medicaid penalize hospitals with high readmission rates.

The quality of the team that cares for heart patients, outstanding door-to-balloon times, the training of physicians and staff, American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association guideline-directed care and dedicated cardiovascular nursing units all contribute to the low readmission rate, according to Brewer.

“It’s a team effort – from the EMS bringing the patients, the Emergency Room recognition of heart attack and quick, appropriate response to activating the Cath Lab, to the cardiologists and cath team of nurses and techs working to restore blood flow through the occluded arteries, to the expert nursing care on the dedicated cardiovascular units. All play a part in the excellent care our heart patients receive,” said Brewer.

“We’re amazed at the skill of the Cardiovascular Medicine, PC, doctors. They always are willing to learn and try the newest technology or participate in the latest clinical trials. When surgery is necessary, Genesis has one of the most experienced surgeons in the Midwest in Dr. Dale Geiss, who has performed more than 12,000 surgeries in his venerable career.”

Brewer says average length of stay at Genesis for heart attack patients is about two days.

“With the Door to Balloon initiative so well established at Genesis, we are saving the heart muscle of our patients daily. The quicker you open the coronary arteries and re-establish blood flow in those arteries, the less likely it is that the heart muscle will be affected. This means patients have the strength and symptom relief afterwards. It is amazing.”

Depending upon their needs, patients are able to go home with family support or be referred to a visiting nurse program such as Genesis VNA provides. Many patients choose to regain their strength and improve their cardiac function by attending the accredited CardioPulmonary Rehab Program at the Genesis Heart Institute.

Genesis also participates in a National Quality Database – the NCDR – that provides physicians and staff with comparative benchmark data. More than 400 heart procedures are safely performed in Genesis Cath/EP Labs every month.

Through the Heart Institute, a multidisciplinary association of cardiologists, cardiac surgeons and vascular surgeons collaborate on the best approaches to managing and treating cardiovascular disease. The Institute plays a key role in developing and implementing the latest evidence-based practices for cardiovascular disease. Through the Institute, patients have access to the most advanced devices, drugs, treatment protocols and research.

For example, Genesis was the first hospital in the Quad Cities, and is one of just three in Iowa, to offer Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR) as a treatment option for patients diagnosed with severe aortic stenosis. The minimally invasive procedure replaces a patient’s aortic valve without traditional open-heart surgery and while the heart continues to beat. Benefits of the TAVR procedure include significantly less pain than open heart surgery and shorter recovery time. The procedure is a life-saving option for patients considered too high-risk to tolerate an open heart surgery.

Other advanced treatments available at Genesis through the Heart Institute include pulmonary vein isolation cryoablation for heart arrhythmia; and laser atherectomy and drug-eluting balloon angioplasty for Peripheral Artery Disease.

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