8/28/2013 12:00:00 AM
Health center is among the first in the country to receive new designation for quality, cost-efficient cardiac care.
YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (Aug. 7, 2013) – Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield has recognized St. Elizabeth Health Center as one of the first hospitals in the nation to receive a Blue Distinction Center+ designation for cardiac care.
The designation is part of the Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care program and recognizes hospitals that deliver quality specialty care based on objective, transparent measures for patient safety and health outcomes developed with input from the medical community. This year, the national program added a new designation, Blue Distinction Centers+, to recognize hospitals that deliver both quality and cost-efficient specialty care.
The Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care program was developed in 2006 to help patients find quality specialty care while encouraging health care providers to improve the quality of care they deliver. To receive a Blue Distinction Center+ for Cardiac Care designation, a hospital must demonstrate success in meeting both quality and safety criteria, such as preventing hospital-acquired infections, and cardiac-specific quality measures. Quality measures relate to lower rates of complications and death following cardiac surgery as well as non-surgical procedures such as the placement of cardiac stents.
In addition, hospitals receiving the Blue Distinction Center+ designation must provide better cost efficiency relative to their peers.
Quality is key: only facilities that meet Blue Distinction’s established quality measures are considered for designation as a Blue Distinction Center+.
“St. Elizabeth Health Center is proud to be recognized by Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield for meeting the rigorous cardiac care selection criteria set by the Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care program,” says Mariann Pacak, R.N., M.H.H.S., director of heart and vascular services.
“St. Elizabeth Health Center is dedicated to making our cardiac services among the best in the country,” Pacak says. “We continually strive to improve the quality of care we provide to ensure the best outcomes for our patients and their families. That includes being good financial stewards and providing cost-efficient care. This designation recognizes that and distinguishes St. Elizabeth Health Center as a leader in providing the best, most efficient care available for cardiac patients, not just in our community, but in the country."
Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, claiming nearly 600,000 lives each year. Cardiac procedures, including bypass and stent placement, are among the most common major medical procedures in the nation, with more than 1 million procedures performed every year. Collectively, these procedures cost more than $28 billion a year. The Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care program seeks to reduce this burden by empowering patients with the knowledge and tools to find both quality and value for their cardiac care needs.
Research shows that Blue Distinction Centers+ demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients. They have lower rates of complications following certain cardiac procedures and lower rates of health care-associated infections compared with their peers. Blue Distinction Centers+ are also 20 percent more cost-efficient for those same procedures.
For more information about the program and a complete listing of designated facilities, visit www.bcbs.com/bluedistinction.
About Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield
Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield is the trade name of Community Insurance Company, an independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. ®ANTHEM is a registered trademark of Anthem Insurance Companies, Inc. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield names and symbols are registered marks of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Additional information about Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Ohio is available at www.anthem.com. Also, follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/healthjoinin, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HealthJoinIn, or visit our YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/healthjoinin.
Blue Distinction Centers® (BDC) met overall quality measures for patient safety and outcomes, developed with input from the medical community. Blue Distinction Centers+SM (BDC+) also met cost measures that address consumers’ need for affordable healthcare. Individual outcomes may vary. National criteria are displayed on www.bcbs.com. A Local Blue Plan may require additional criteria for facilities located in its own service area. For details on Local Blue Plan Criteria, a provider’s in-network status, or your own policy’s coverage, contact your Local Blue Plan. Each hospital’s Cost Index is calculated with data from its Local Blue Plan. Hospitals in CA, ID, NY, PA, and WA may lie in two Local Blue Plans’ areas, resulting in two Cost Index figures; and their own Local Blue Plans decide whether one or both Cost Index figures must meet BDC+ national criteria. Neither Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association nor any Blue Plans are responsible for damages or non-covered charges resulting from Blue Distinction or other provider finder information or care received from Blue Distinction or other providers.
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