UC Irvine Health receives 5th consecutive heart association quality care award

Program also achieves Target: Heart Failure Honor Roll

October 05, 2015

UC Irvine Health has received the Get With the Guidelines® - Heart Failure Gold-Plus Quality Achievement Award from the American Heart Association for heart failure care. This recognition signifies that UC Irvine Health has achieved the goal of treating heart failure patients according to the secondary guidelines established by the American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology Foundation.

This marks the fifth consecutive year the UC Irvine Health Heart Failure Program has been recognized with this award. Get With the Guidelines – Heart Failure is a quality improvement program that helps hospitals provide the most up-to-date, research-based guidelines with the goal of speeding recovery and reducing readmissions for heart failure patients. Numerous published studies have demonstrated the program’s success in achieving patient outcome improvements, including reducing 30-day admissions, since it was launched in 2005.

UC Irvine’s cardiology team earned the award by meeting specific quality achievement measures for the diagnosis and treatment of heart failure patients at a set level for a designated period.

These measures include evaluation of the patient, proper use of medications and aggressive risk-reduction therapies. These include ACE inhibitors/ARBs, beta-blockers, diuretics, anticoagulants and other appropriate therapies.

Before patients are discharged, they also receive education on managing their heart failure and overall health and get a follow-up visit scheduled, as well as other care transition interventions.

UC Irvine Medical Center also received the association’s Target: Heart Failure Honor Roll, for the second consecutive year. Target: Heart Failure is an initiative that provides hospitals with educational tools, prevention programs and treatment guidelines designed to reduce the risk of heart failure patients ending up back in the hospital. Hospitals are required to meet criteria that improves medication adherence, provides early follow-up care and coordination, and enhances patient education. The goal is to reduce hospital readmissions and help patients improve their quality of life in managing this chronic condition.

According to the American Heart Association, about 5.7 million adults in the United States suffer from heart failure, with the number expected to rise to 8 million by 2030. Statistics show that each year about 870,000 new cases are diagnosed and about 50 percent of those diagnosed will die within five years. However, many heart failure patients can lead a full, enjoyable life when their condition is managed with proper medications or devices and with healthy lifestyle changes.

UC Irvine Health comprises the clinical, medical education and research enterprises of the University of California, Irvine. Patients can access UC Irvine Health at physician offices throughout Orange County and at its main campus, UC Irvine Medical Center in Orange, Calif., a 411-bed acute care hospital that provides tertiary and quaternary care, ambulatory and specialty medical clinics, behavioral health and rehabilitation. U.S. News & World Report has listed it among America’s Best Hospitals for 15 consecutive years. UC Irvine Medical Center features Orange County’s only National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center, high-risk perinatal/neonatal program, Level I trauma center and Level II pediatric trauma center, and is the primary teaching hospital for UC Irvine School of Medicine. UC Irvine Health serves a region of more than 3 million people in Orange County, western Riverside County and southeast Los Angeles County. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

About the University of California, Irvine: Currently celebrating its 50th anniversary, UCI is the youngest member of the prestigious Association of American Universities. The campus has produced three Nobel laureates and is known for its academic achievement, premier research, innovation and anteater mascot. Led by Chancellor Howard Gillman, UCI has more than 30,000 students and offers 192 degree programs. It’s located in one of the world’s safest and most economically vibrant communities and is Orange County’s second-largest employer, contributing $4.8 billion annually to the local economy. For more on UCI, visit www.uci.edu.

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