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Dr. Charles Lambiotte (left) and Ryan Weaver (right) display the Chest Pain Accreditation Certificate they received from the American College of Cardiology.
Conemaugh Meyersdale Medical Center was recognized by the American College of Cardiology for its demonstrated expertise and commitment in treating patients with chest pain. Conemaugh Meyersdale was awarded Chest Pain Center Accreditation after a rigorous onsite evaluation of the staff’s ability to evaluate, diagnose and treat patients who may be experiencing a heart attack.
Nearly a year before being evaluated, Conemaugh Meyersdale set up a committee comprised of an emergency room physician, emergency department nursing staff, respiratory therapists, Meyersdale Ambulance Association, administration and various other medical center departments to thoroughly investigate how chest pain patients are diagnosed, treated, and prepared for post-discharge care. The committee was headed by Conemaugh Meyersdale’s Quality Manager, Ryan Weaver, RN, BSN.
“We focused on the standards set by the American College of Cardiology and looked at techniques and procedures to better treat patients presenting with chest pain at Meyersdale,” Weaver said. “Our committee worked diligently so we could earn this accreditation. I’m especially grateful to Charles Lambiotte, MD, who provided a wealth of knowledge and served on behalf of the emergency department’s physicians.”
Hospitals that have earned ACC Chest Pain Center Accreditation have proven exceptional competency in treating patients with heart attack symptoms. They have streamlined their systems from admission to evaluation to diagnosis and treatment all the way through to appropriate post-discharge care and recommendations and assistance in patient lifestyle changes.
“Earning this accreditation shows that our physicians and staff are well trained and ready to meet the emergent needs of our patients, including chest pain,” said Heather Smith, Conemaugh Meyersdale’s CEO. “I cannot stress enough that if you’re having chest pain, get to the nearest emergency room immediately.”
Hospitals receiving Chest Pain Center Accreditation from the ACC must take part in a multi-faceted clinical process that involves completing a gap analysis, examining variances of care, developing an action plan, a rigorous onsite review and monitoring for sustained success. Improved methods and strategies of caring for patients include streamlining processes, implementing of guidelines and standards and adopting best practices in the care of patients experiencing the signs and symptoms of a heart attack. Facilities that achieve accreditation meet or exceed an array of stringent criteria and have organized a team of doctors, nurses, clinicians, and other administrative staff that earnestly support the efforts leading to better patient education and improved patient outcomes.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 730,000 Americans suffer a heart attack each year. The most common symptom of a heart attack for both men and women is chest pain or discomfort. However, women are more likely to have atypical symptoms. Other heart attack symptoms include, but are not limited to, tingling or discomfort in one or both arms, back, shoulder, neck or jaw, shortness of breath, cold sweat, unusual tiredness, heartburn-like feeling, nausea or vomiting, sudden dizziness and fainting.