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St. Joes re-designated blue distinction for cardiac

Excellus BlueCross BlueShield has re-designated St. Joseph's Hospital Health Center as a Blue Distinction Center for Cardiac Care. To date, more than 400 facilities nationwide have received a Blue Distinction Center for Cardiac Care designation.

As part of Blue Distinction(r), facilities are required to reapply periodically for re-evaluation. This review process confirms that all Blue Distinction Centers(r), new and old, continue to meet Blue Distinction's evidence-based quality thresholds, determined in collaboration with expert physicians and organizations. It also provides an opportunity to improve the overall quality of care, by requiring all Blue Distinction Centers to meet selection criteria that keep abreast with ongoing advances in clinical practice.

The need for quality cardiac care is urgent: The American Heart Association estimates that this year alone, 1.2 million Americans will experience a first or recurrent heart attack.

"We are proud that Excellus BlueCross BlueShield again has chosen us for this prestigious program," said Theodore M. Pasinski, president of St. Joseph's. "St. Joseph's has a history of providing leading-edge cardiac care to the Central New York community, and programs such as Blue Distinction help us continue to evaluate and modify our services to maintain those excellent outcomes."

Pasinski added that the highly skilled physicians, nurses and ancillary staff members should be credited with helping St. Joseph's achieve its status as a Blue Distinction Center.

St. Joseph's offers a full continuum of cardiac services, including inpatient cardiac care, cardiac rehabilitation, cardiac catheterization and cardiac surgery (including coronary artery bypass graft surgery).* According to the "11th Annual Health Grades Hospital Quality in America Study," St. Joseph's ranks number one in New York State for cardiac surgery and among the top five percent in the nation for overall cardiac care, coronary interventions, and cardiac surgery.

"Blue Distinction puts a high value on research and evidence-based health and medical information," says Arthur Vercillo, M.D., regional president, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield. "Blue Distinction Centers show our commitment to working with doctors and hospitals in communities across the country to identify leading institutions that meet clinically validated quality standards and deliver better overall outcomes in patient care."

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