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Winchester Medical Center's Heart Surgery Program Receives Highest Rating

Winchester Medical Center's Heart Surgery Program Receives Highest Rating

Winchester Medical Center has received a 3-star rating, the highest score possible, for coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) from the Society of Thoracic Surgeons.

Coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG), often referred to as heart bypass surgery, uses healthy vessel “grafts” to replace clogged arteries that are no longer able to deliver adequate blood supply to the heart muscle. A cardiothoracic surgeon may replace one or several vessels during a CABG procedure.

The Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) is a leader in establishing and reporting quality guidelines that give consumers the tools they need to make informed decisions about their care. Cardiothoracic surgeons voluntarily report their outcomes to improve the care and safety of patients. STS has a comprehensive rating system for the quality of cardiac surgery among hospitals across the country. Only 12-15% of hospitals with cardiac surgery programs receive the 3-star rating. The current analysis covers the period from July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016.

“Receiving the highest STS rating for heart bypass surgery reflects the collaboration and focus on quality of our entire cardiac surgery team,” said Grady W. (Skip) Philips, III, FACHE, senior vice president of Valley Health System and president of Winchester Medical Center. “Thanks to the efforts of our surgeons, nurses, anesthesiologists, intensivists, cardiologists, pharmacists and other team members, as well as the leadership of our Heart Surgery Clinical Council, we’ve achieved this national recognition for excellent patient care.”

The 3-star rating from STS is based on a composite score built upon 11 individual measurements grouped into four categories:

  • avoidance of mortality;
  • avoidance of morbidity (percentage of patients who leave hospital with no serious complications such as stroke or kidney failure);
  • use of the internal mammary artery from the chest wall during surgery, shown to lead to better results; and
  • use of four prescribed medications following surgery, shown to improve results.

The STS National Database was established in 1989 as an initiative for quality improvement and patient safety among cardiothoracic surgeons and programs. The database and its quality assessment activities, nationally recognized quality measures, and quality improvement initiatives are built on the foundation of more than 5.8 million surgical records.