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Published:  September 24, 2010

Texas Heart Institute at St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital Achieves Heart Failure Institute Accreditation

Texas Heart Institute (THI) at St. Luke’s Episcopal Hospital (SLEH) has become the first hospital in Texas to become accredited as a Heart Failure Institute by the Healthcare Accreditation Colloquium.  This accreditation is based on proficiency in managing heart failure, placing emphasis on both quantity and quality of life.

“Heart disease is the number one killer in the world, and heart failure is the number one problem,” explains James T. Willerson, MD, president and medical director, THI. “The physicians, nurses and technicians of the Texas Heart Institute at St. Luke’s Episcopal Hospital have led a dedicated effort to treat and ameliorate heart failure for 40 years. This kind of long-term commitment and experience in treatment, research and prevention cannot be matched and we’re very proud of all who have contributed to securing this accreditation.”

The Healthcare Accreditation Colloquium brings quality and process improvement to the care of heart failure patients in the community and hospitals by using improvement-based continual accreditation.  The Colloquium offers an organized and systematic approach to heart failure that encompasses the entire continuum of care. The process is modeled after well-established process improvement methods used in industry.

This accreditation promotes several patient benefits, including:
•    Streamlined processes that improve quality of care;
•    A patient-focused approach to “transition planning” that prepares the patient for a successful return home and subsequent visit to the doctor’s office; and,
•    Patient and family caregiver education, which enables individuals to participate in their own care, giving them more independence and avoiding frequent hospitalization.

“This recognition reinforces why the organization is the top ranked heart hospital in the Southwest United States,” said Margaret M. Van Bree, DrPH, chief executive officer, St. Luke’s Episcopal Hospital, and senior vice president, St. Luke’s Episcopal Health System.  “Our team of cardiologists, cardiovascular surgeons, transplant surgeons and nurses are equipped to treat the most complex cases in a caring environment.”

Texas Heart Institute at St. Luke’s Episcopal Hospital has been ranked in the top 10 heart hospitals in the nation for 20 consecutive years by U.S.News & World Report.

“St. Luke’s Heart Failure Program is well-established,” said Tony Joseph, MD, one of the Colloqium site reviewers.  “St. Luke’s offers an impressive array of treatments for heart failure and is among the finest in the country.” 

The program covers the spectrum of care for those with heart failure—from diagnosis to screening for medical and surgical therapies, including heart ventricular-assist devices (LVADs), IV therapy, heart transplantation and stem cell therapy.

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