2 hospitals win cardiac awards

AAMC, BWMC meet standards for treatment of heart problems

November 09, 2008

Anne Arundel County's two medical centers have received certification awards from a national cardiology organization, which recognizes that the hospitals adhere strictly to established treatment guidelines when providing cardiac care.

Baltimore Washington Medical Center in Glen Burnie and Anne Arundel Medical Center in Annapolis received the Silver Performance Achievement Award from the American College of Cardiology Foundation's National Cardiovascular Data Registry. Both medical centers are among 93 hospitals nationwide and four in the state to have earned the award.

The award of excellence means both hospitals have met best-practice standards for the past 12 months. The guidelines include aggressive use of medications such as cholesterol-lowering drugs, beta-blockers, ACE inhibitors, aspirin and anticoagulants.

"This award is a sign of our continued commitment to providing quality care to cardiac patients in their time of need," said Dr. Samuel Yoon, interventional cardiologist and director of cardiac catheterization at BWMC. "By implementing a high standard of care, we are saving and improving lives for hundreds of heart attack patients throughout the Baltimore-Washington region."

AAMC is the only hospital in the county and one of seven in the state to be accredited by the Society of Chest Pain Centers, and that accomplishment was instrumental in gaining the NCDR's award, according to Paula D. Wadley, vice president of clinical and support services and director of AAMC cardiovascular services.

"The AAMC cardiac care team has made tremendous strides in the past few years in the effort to become one of the state's elite cardiovascular programs," Wadley said. "This achievement, along with our accreditation as a chest pain center, demonstrates our success in our commitment to provide better care for our patients."

The primary goals of a certified chest pain center are to reduce the time it takes for a patient experiencing symptoms of a possible heart attack to see a physician and to provide a specialized setting in which physicians are better able to monitor patients with possible cardiac symptoms.

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