NCH Named One of the Nation's Top Cardiovascular Hospitals

December 21, 2005 - (Naples, FL) The NCH Healthcare System was recently named one of the nation's 100 Top cardiovascular hospitals by Evanston, Ill.-based Solucient®.

The annual Solucient award for cardiovascular services objectively measures performance on key criteria at the nation's top performing acute-care hospitals. This is the first time the NCH Healthcare System ] has been recognized with this honor.

The 2005 Solucient 100 Top Hospitals®: Cardiovascular Benchmarks for Success study appears in the Oct. 31 edition of Modern Healthcare magazine. As the nation's leading source of information products for the healthcare industry, Solucient provides tools and vital insights that healthcare managers use to improve the performance of their organizations. Solucient's expertise and proven solutions enable providers, payers and pharmaceutical companies to drive business growth, manage costs and deliver high quality care.

“The combination of a leading medical staff and a progressive hospital have resulted in excellent medical outcomes for our patients. This is why organizations such as Solucient and HealthGrades have placed the Cardiovascular Program at NCH among the very best in the country,” states George Gamouras, M.D., Chairman of the Department of Interventional Cardiology.

Scot Schultz, MD, comments, “As a physician and the Chairman of the Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, it is gratifying when multiple independent healthcare quality ratings organizations recognize you for the work that you do. However, the best reward is when patients tell you that you have enhanced and extended their lives through your work.”

The NCH Healthcare System is an alliance of over 550 physicians, two hospitals, and dozens of other medical facilities in Naples, Florida.

Among the key findings:

  • States with higher rates of revascularization (angioplasty and bypass surgery) for treatment of the most severe form of heart attacks are experiencing higher survival rates, with great variation by state in revascularization rates for these kinds of heart attacks.
  • Survival rates for patients with this type of heart attack are equally good whether they are directly admitted for revascularization or are stable enough to be transferred to another facility providing the procedures.
  • Winners of the 100 Top Hospitals Cardiovascular award were more likely than peer hospitals to provide revascularization to patients with the most severe heart attacks.
  • If cardiovascular services in all acute-care hospitals performed at the same level as the hospitals with the nation's top cardiovascular services, 10,000 additional cardiovascular patients could survive each year; and an additional 1,100 patients could be complication-free.
  • Winning hospitals annually perform as much as 80 percent more bypass surgeries and PCIs, including angioplasties, as their peers.
  • Cardiovascular patients at winning hospitals return to everyday life faster than those at non-winning hospitals. Patients at the winning hospitals were released more than a half-day earlier than patients at peer hospitals.
  • Average cardiovascular-related costs for benchmark hospitals were nearly 15 percent lower than at peer hospitals.

The seventh edition of the Solucient 100 Top Hospitals®: Cardiovascular Benchmarks for Success study analyzed acute-care hospitals nationwide using detailed empirical performance data from publicly available Medicare MedPAR data and Medicare cost reports. The measures were calculated for three classes of hospitals with the following number of winners in each:

  • Teaching with Cardiovascular Residency Programs - 30 winners
  • Teaching without Cardiovascular Residency Programs - 40 winners
  • Community - 30 winners

Solucient® scored facilities in seven key performance areas: risk-adjusted medical mortality, risk-adjusted surgical mortality, complications, percentage of CABG patients with internal mammary artery use, procedure volume, severity-adjusted average length of stay, and wage and severity-adjusted average cost.

More information on this study and other 100 Top Hospitals research is available at Copies of the 100 Top Hospitals report can be purchased by calling Solucient at 1-800-568-3282 or logging on to .

Editors Note: Additional information can be found at or at under the "Media" tab.

The NCH Healthcare System is an alliance of over 550 physicians, two hospitals and dozens of medical facilities in Naples, Florida.