HOUSTON (July 27, 2017)

Memorial Hermann Southeast Hospital, Memorial Hermann Greater Heights Hospital, Memorial Hermann Southwest Hospital and Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Hospital all have received Chest Pain Center accreditation from The Joint Commission (TJC). An independent, not-for-profit organization, TJC accredits and certifies nearly 21,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States.

Healthcare organizations that have received this accreditation have demonstrated a high level of expertise in dealing with patients with heart attack symptoms. This accreditation demonstrates an integrated and systematic approach to clinical care of a heart attack and encourages emergency medical services to transport a patient to a certified center. When someone experiencing heart attack symptoms is properly identified and brought to a hospital that has proper treatment resources it can positively impact patient outcomes.

“This accreditation is recognition of Memorial Hermann's commitment to the highest levels of patient safety and quality care. Our goal is to save lives and improve outcomes for our patients. We are very proud of this achievement and the work of our patient care and local EMS teams,” said Amy Harberg, Vice President of the Heart and Vascular Service Line for Memorial Hermann Health System.

To become an Accredited Chest Pain Center, each of the four hospitals engaged in a four-day rigorous evaluation by TJC for its ability to identify, evaluate and treat heart attack patients. To the communities these campuses serve, this means that processes are in place that meet strict criteria aimed at:

  • Reducing the time from onset of symptoms to diagnosis and treatment
  • Treating patients more quickly during the critical window of time when the integrity of the heart muscle can be preserved
  • Monitoring patients when it is not certain that they are having a heart attack to ensure they are not sent home too quickly or needlessly admitted to the hospital

In addition, patients in cardiac arrest have access to an interventional cardiologist on call 24/7. Each campus has the capability to track and monitor patient outcomes through the National Cardiovascular Registry which presents an opportunity to evaluate data and practice patterns, drive quality enhance patient care.

Chest pain programs are required to meet the following requirements in order to receive accreditation for a two-year period:

  • Compliance with national standards in chest pain
  • Effective and consistent use of appropriate, evidence-based clinical practice guidelines for patients with acute myocardial infarction heart attacks and acute coronary syndrome
  • Collection and analysis of a minimum of four performance measures specific to the chest pain patient population

“By becoming Accredited Chest Pain Centers, these Memorial Hermann hospitals have enhanced the quality of care for the cardiac patient and have demonstrated their commitment to higher standards,” said Harberg.

Memorial Hermann Northeast Hospital and Memorial Hermann Katy Hospital previously received chest pain accreditation from the TJC.

The four newly accredited hospitals join several campuses within the Memorial Hermann Health System with heart programs that are certified by other agencies. The heart programs at Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center and Memorial Hermann Sugar Land Hospital are accredited by The Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care.