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AHA honors Memorial for achievement in treating heart failure patients

Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center and The Heart Center of Niagara have received the Get With The Guidelines–Heart Failure (GWTG–HF) Bronze Performance Achievement Award from the American Heart Association.

The recognition signifies that Memorial has reached an aggressive goal of treating heart failure patients for at least 90 days with 85 percent compliance to core standard levels of care outlined by the American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology secondary prevention guidelines for heart failure patients.

Memorial has previously been recognized for Get With the Guidelines achievement in quality stroke and cardiac care.

“This latest achievement award is certainly emblematic of our dedication to providing quality care to all patients at The Heart Center of Niagara and Niagara Falls Memorial,” said Robert Neufeld, M.D., Memorial’s chief of cardiology. “Our staff deserves a great deal of credit for meeting these rigorous performance standards.”

Get With The Guidelines is a quality improvement initiative that provides hospital staff with tools that follow proven evidence-based guidelines and procedures in caring for heart failure patients to prevent future hospitalizations. According to GWTG–Heart Failure treatment guidelines, heart failure patients are started on aggressive risk reduction therapies such as cholesterol-lowering drugs, beta-blockers, ACE inhibitors, aspirin, diuretics, and anticoagulants in the hospital. They also receive alcohol/drug use and thyroid management counseling as well as referrals for cardiac rehabilitation before being discharged.

“The full implementation of national heart failure guideline recommended care is a critical step in preventing recurrent hospitalizations and prolonging the lives of heart failure patients,” said Gregg C. Fonarow, M.D., national chairman of the GWTG Steering Committee and director of Ahmanson-UCLA Cardiomyopathy Center. “The goal of the American Heart Association’s Get With The Guidelines program is to help hospitals like Niagara Falls Memorial implement appropriate evidence-based care and protocols that will reduce disability and the number of deaths in these patients.”


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