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Heart Failure

Heart Failure

Heart Failure

The Graphs below display how well St. Mary's performs in key quality measures when compared against all other hospitals in the United States in caring for patients who arrive with a diagnosis of Heart Failure.

Why should patients with heart failure receive condition-specific instructions at discharge?

In most cases, heart failure can't be cured.  It is a complex illness to manage, but patients can contribute to the quality of the management of their illness if they  take ownership in life-long learning of how to manage it.  That is why St. Mary's discharge instructions which include:

  1. Diet
  2. List of medications
  3. Activity
  4. Weight monitoring
  5. Signs and symptoms of worsening of the illness and what to do
  6. Follow-up care

According to  The Joint Commission, heart failure patients benefit from discharge instructions in these six key areas.

This quality measure is the percentage of heart failure patients who were given written discharge instructions or educational material addressing all of the six topics above. 

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Why is it important for heart failure patients to have their left ventricular function assessed?

The Joint Commission, and the Americal Heart Association has recommend that left ventricular function assessment is a key test that should be performed on patients with heart failure.

This quality measure is the percentage of heart failure patients whose left ventricular function was either assessed before arrival, during the hospital stay, or is planned to be done after discharge.

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 What is and ACE Inhibitor or an ARB and why is it important for patients with heart failure?

ACE Inhibitor stands for Angiotensin Converting Enzyme Inhibitor.  It is a medicine used to treat heart attacks, heart failure or a decreased function of the left ventricle of the heart.  It stops the production of a hormone that can narrow blood vessels.  ARB stands for Angiotensin Receptor Blocker and is an acceptable alternative to ACE Inhibitors for patients who may not be able to tolerate an ACE Inhibitor. 

ACE Inhibitors or an ARBs prescribed to heart failure patients results in lower incidence of patient deaths and complications. - Source: The Joint Commission

This quality measure is the percentage of heart failure patients who were prescribed and ACE Inhibitor or ARB at hospital discharge.

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