Myrtle Beach hospital ranked No. 1 for cardiac surgery in state

jfrost@thesunnews.comNovember 2, 2012 

— A local hospital’s cardiac program has been ranked tops in the state for cardiac surgery by a Denver-based company that provides consumers with information to help them make educated decisions about a physician or hospital.

Healthgrades ranked Grand Strand Regional Medical Center No. 1 in South Carolina and among the top 5 percent in the nation for cardiac surgery for the fourth consecutive year.

The recognitions are part of a report, “American Hospital Quality Outcomes 2013: Healthgrades Report to the Nation,” which focuses on hospital performance for about 4,500 hospitals nationwide for nearly 30 common procedures and conditions.

About 86 percent of Americans in 27 top designated market areas agree they would be more likely to choose, or not choose, a hospital if they could learn ahead of time the mortality rates for a certain procedure, according to recent research conducted by Harris Interactive for Healthgrades.

Lisa Bongiovanni, Healthgrades’ communications manager, said Grand Strand Regional’s ranking shows there’s the “potential for a higher quality of care and life after having a procedure done there.”

And shows the dedication of people at the hospital to be ranked no.1 in South Carolina for four consecutive years, Bongiovanni said.

The recognition is “significant because it shows continuing quality for our cardiac program,” said Joan Carroza, Grand Strand Regional’s spokeswoman. “The staff really addresses quality issues. What patients and people in the community look at is the physician, the success rates, and overall quality of the nursing staff. This award reflects the quality of the program.”

Grand Strand Regional did a little more than 7,000 cardiac catheterization procedures in 2011 and had 378 open heart cases, Carroza said. She said the hospital will do probably more than 400 cardiac surgeries this year.

Grand Strand Regional’s heart program includes two cardiac surgeons, two cardiac anesthesiologists and 13 cardiologists. The hospital opened The Heart Center in 2011, a three-story building that consolidates heart services. Facilities include three cardiac catheterization laboratories, a dedicated electrophysiology laboratory, two state-of-the-art cardiac surgery operating rooms, a cardiovascular intensive care unit, coronary intensive care unit, progressive care unit and telemetry beds. The hospital added a heart murmur clinic and lung cancer program in 2011.

Grand Strand Regional has received some other recognitions from Healthgrades: America’s 100 Best Hospitals for Cardiac Surgery for two years in a row, Five-Star Recipient for Cardiac Surgery for four years in a row, Five-Star Recipient for Coronary Bypass Surgery for four years in a row, and Recipient of the Healthgrades Cardiac Surgery Excellence Award for four years in a row, officials said.

Contact JANELLE FROST at 443-2404.

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