Published on November 19, 2014

Mercy Fitzgerald Receives Chest Pain Center Accreditation with PCI

Darby, PA (November 19, 2014): Mercy Fitzgerald has recently received full Chest Pain Center accreditation with PCI from the Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care (SCPC). Mercy Fitzgerald is the first Mercy hospital and one of 32 hospitals in Pennsylvania to earn this distinction.

“Our healthcare team’s goal is to save lives and prevent the devastating effects of heart disease in our community,” says Susan Cusack, executive director of Mercy Fitzgerald. “Receiving accreditation as a Chest Pain Center reinforces our commitment to the highest standards of care when treating patients who experience chest pain or other symptoms of a heart attack. As part of our efforts, we continuously educate our community on these symptoms and strongly encourage them to seek medical attention the moment symptoms occur.”

Heart attacks are the leading cause of death in the United States, with 600,000 people dying annually of heart disease. More than five million Americans visit hospitals each year with chest pain. SCPC’s goal is to significantly reduce the mortality rate of these patients by teaching the public to recognize and react to the early symptoms of a possible heart attack, reduce the time that it takes to receive treatment, and increase the accuracy and effectiveness of treatment.

The Accredited Chest Pain Center’s protocol-driven and systematic approach to patient management allows physicians to reduce time to treatment during the critical early stages of a heart attack, when treatments are most effective, and to better monitor patients when it is not clear whether or not they are having a coronary event. Such observation helps ensure that patients are neither sent home too early nor needlessly admitted.

With the increase in chest pain centers came the need to establish standards designed to improve the consistency and quality of care provided to patients. SCPC’s accreditation process ensures that centers meet or exceed quality-of-care measures in acute cardiac medicine.

The Accredited Chest Pain Center at Mercy Fitzgerald has demonstrated its expertise and commitment to quality patient care by meeting or exceeding a wide set of stringent criteria and undergoing an onsite review by a team of SPCP’s accreditation review specialists. Key areas in which an Accredited Chest Pain Center must demonstrate expertise include the following:

  • Integrating the emergency department with the local emergency medical system
  • Assessing, diagnosing, and treating patients quickly
  • Effectively treating patients with low risk for acute coronary syndrome and no assignable cause for their symptoms
  • Continually seeking to improve processes and procedures
  • Ensuring the competence and training of Accredited Chest Pain Center personnel
  • Maintaining organizational structure and commitment
  • Having a functional design that promotes optimal patient care
  • Supporting community outreach programs that educate the public to promptly seek medical care if they display symptoms of a possible heart attack