Courtesy of Catholic Health - Dr. John Bell-Thomson (right) shares the media spotlight with Edward Zimmerman, Mercy Hospital’s first double TECAB patient.
Recently celebrating its 10th anniversary of service, the Catholic Health Heart Center at Mercy Hospital of Buffalo has developed into one of the most advanced cardiac surgical and interventional programs in the country.
“We have expanded our services and program each year over the past decade,” said Jason Jankowiak, vice president of Catholic Health Cardiac Services. “We have attracted new cardiac specialists to our community, and most importantly, we have achieved great patient outcomes as evidenced by our high national quality ratings.”
In 2011, Mercy Hospital’s heart surgery program was among only 14 percent in the county to receive the Society of Thoracic Surgeons’ highest honor – its “three-star” national quality rating. In addition, HealthGrades, an independent health care research firm, ranked Mercy Hospital in the top 10 percent in the nation two years in a row (2011-2012) for excellence in coronary interventional procedures. Mercy Hospital also received quality achievement awards in 2011 for heart attack and stroke care from the American Heart Association.
Located within Mercy Hospital, the Heart Center features a full spectrum of services, including open-heart surgery and robotic-assisted minimally invasive heart surgery, coronary balloon angioplasty, coronary artery stent replacement, electrophysiology services for irregular heart rhythms, cardiac implants, and a comprehensive program for the use of ventricular assist devices.
The Heart Center is also the area leader in minimally invasive cardiac surgery and the only local program offering da Vinci robotic heart surgery. John Bell-Thomson, MD, chair of cardiothoracic surgery at the Heart Center, performed the area’s first robotic mitral valve repair in 2010, and recently became one of only a handful of surgeons in the country performing totally endoscopic coronary bypass surgery using the da Vinci robot. These procedures result in fewer complications, less scarring, shorter hospital stays and quicker recoveries.
Along with Mercy Hospital, Catholic Health hospitals, including Kenmore Mercy, Sisters of Charity, and its St. Joseph Campus, deliver more cardiac care than any other area provider.
“Catholic Health’s innovative service line approach to treating patients with heart disease differentiates us from other hospitals on a local and national level,” Jankowiak said. “To improve disease management, we are not only looking at care delivered within our hospitals, but we have partnered with our physicians to monitor care that is provided outside the hospital too.”
In addition, Catholic Health offers cardiac diagnostic services such as stress testing, EKGs and echocardiograms at all of its hospitals; rehabilitation services through its HeartStrong and Sisters Hospital Cardiac Rehabilitation programs; home care services to prevent cardiac-related hospital readmissions; and a variety of wellness programs to help people prevent heart disease or better manage an existing heart condition.
At Catholic Health, delivering compassionate, high quality cardiac care continues to be the heart of its mission.
For more information on Catholic Health’s Cardiac Services visit chsbuffalo.org or call 716-447-6205.
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