Physicians at Birmingham Heart Clinic (BHC), along with the team at St. Vincent’s East, worked together to earn a triple cardiovascular accreditation for St. Vincent’s East. The hospital is the first in the U.S. to meet the criteria for this “trifecta” of cardiovascular accreditation which includes cycle five (most recent standards) for chest pain with primary percutaneous coronary intervention/resuscitation, heart failure, and atrial fibrillation with electrophysiology service. St. Vincent’s East is also the fourth hospital in the U.S to receive accreditation for atrial fibrillation.
Each service line also had its own physician champion: Dr. Jim Trimm led the efforts for the heart failure and chest pain accreditations and Dr. Michael Bailey led the efforts for the atrial fibrillation accreditation.
Dr. Trimm led the heart failure and chest pain discussions involving the development of protocols and cardiovascular committee alignment with cardiologists and emergency department physicians. This ultimately ensured that both new and revised processes worked in a concise, clinical manner. During the course of the accreditation, Dr. Trimm and the team went back and forth to the drawing board to get the algorithms “just right.”
Dr. Bailey worked diligently on forming protocols to ensure optimal care for our patients with atrial fibrillation. Although this patient population was previously being cared for according to evidence-based care, Dr. Bailey was able to develop patient care algorithms and detail the actual care process. Dr. Bailey focused on standardization, which created far-reaching impact on both pre-hospital and hospital care.
“We were able to earn these three accreditations in just seven short months,” explained Gordon Wesley, Director of Cardiovascular Services. “It is usually an 18-month process for one just accreditation.”