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Indy hospital earns national recognition for top cardiac care

Photo courtesy of Franciscan Health Indianapolis

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Franciscan Health Indianapolis is considered one of the nation’s best hospitals for heart failure patients earning the highest honors from the American Heart Association’s ‘Get with the Guidelines’ program.

“This award attests to the dedication and hard work of our doctors, nurses and cardiac nurse navigators and support staff at Franciscan Health Heart Center,” said Terri Ruff, vice president of operations for Franciscan Health Central Indiana, in a news release. “The tools and resources provided help us track and measure our success to improve patient outcomes.”

The American Heart Association (AHA) uses a number of criteria to assess who comes out on top. Hospitals must follow evidence-based guidelines regarding appropriate prescriptions post-discharge, a commitment to vigilant follow up care and rigorous documentation for all patients.

To receive a GOLD recognition, hospitals must maintain these best practices for two years. Franciscan Health received a GOLD PLUS rating.

“More than 6.5 million adults in the United States are living with heart failure,” Ruff told News 8. “Many heart failure patients can lead a full, enjoyable life when their condition is managed with proper medications or devices and with healthy lifestyle changes.”

“We are pleased to recognize Franciscan Health for their commitment to heart failure care,” Lee H. Schwamm, MD, national chairperson of the Quality Oversight Committee and Executive Chair of Neurology, Director of Acute Stroke Services, Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, said in the same release. “Research has shown that hospitals adhering to clinical measures through the ‘Get with the Guidelines’ quality improvement initiative can often see fewer readmissions and lower mortality rates.”

Heart disease is the number one killer in Indiana and the state ranks 15th nationwide for the highest number of disease deaths. In 2017, 14,445 Hoosiers died of heart disease.

News 8’s medical reporter, Dr. Mary Elizabeth Gillis, D.Ed., is a classically trained medical physiologist and biobehavioral research scientist. She has been a health, medical and science reporter for over 5 years. Her work has appeared in national media outlets. You can follow her on instagram @reportergillis and on Facebook @DrMaryGillis