CVForward > 5 Steps to Building a Structural Heart Clinic
An aging population. Advancements in TAVR (transcatheter aortic valve replacement) and other structural heart therapies like LAAC (left atrial appendage closure) and TMV (transcatheter mitral valve) repair and replacement. The ability to extend and enhance patients’ lives. These are just a few of the reasons you might consider creating a destination center for valvular heart disease.
The need is clear. People are living longer; causes such as high blood pressure are on the rise. More than five million Americans are diagnosed with heart valve disease each year. Yet, many patients go untreated or undertreated, partly due to the lack of available appropriate care.
Dedicated structural heart programs are sometimes expensive to start, but by following the right steps you can make your program quickly efficient and profitable. Even more important, by building a world-class heart valve clinic you can reach a broad audience of qualified patients, extending their lives and improving their health for years to come.
Collaboration is a key to a smooth-running program for optimal patient care and outcomes. It is critical to pair a competent/passionate surgeon and interventional cardiologist and match them with a highly skilled, multidisciplinary team.
It’s one thing to want a destination clinic. Actually creating it takes stellar organization and a blueprint for patient care. Piedmont’s Marcus Heart Valve Center established a dedicated clinic day right from the outset. They established specific, guideline driven clinical pathways to drive quality patient care. Roberts insists on the use of checklists and a debrief after every case. And they arrived at a shared vision that everyone on the team buys into.
Patients who travel a great distance while they’re sick or in need expect—and deserve—services that make their care as comfortable as possible. At Piedmont's Marcus Heart Valve Center, nurses call patients prior to their visit to make sure they’re prepared and answer any questions they may have. Staff assist with transportation options and meet patients on the morning of their procedure, helping them navigate through the building. Piedmont has invested in cutting-edge technology to provide exceptional service.
This means meticulous metrics that alert you to trends in health complications, but also patient satisfaction surveys that measure softer goals such as quality of nursing care, communication and billing experience. At Piedmont, each physician gets a monthly scorecard; software from Tableau displays their combined data analytics. And the entire team meets for a mandatory monthly meeting to review everything from the previous four weeks.