Sentara Norfolk General Hospital Achieves National Recognition for Excellence in Heart Care
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Sentara Norfolk General Hospital Achieves National Recognition for Excellence in Heart Care 

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Norfolk, VA - December 5, 2003- Sentara Norfolk General Hospital is Virginia's only hospital ranked among the 100 top heart hospitals in the nation for five consecutive years, according to the 2003 study by Solucient, a Michigan-based health care information firm.

Annually the 100 Top Hospitals®: Cardiovascular Benchmarks for Success study recognizes the nation's highest performing heart hospitals in Modern Healthcare magazine and sets industry performance standards for treating and managing cardiovascular disease (CVD).

Hospitals making the prestigious 100 Top Hospitals list share many impressive qualities:
* Success rates for congestive heart failure are significantly higher at winning hospitals than at non-winning hospitals (17% higher).
* Success rates for heart attacks are markedly higher than at peer hospitals (9% higher).
* Top hospitals have more success with coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) or coronary balloon angioplasty surgery than peer hospitals (nearly 19% more).
* Winning hospitals have far fewer complications related to post-operative hemorrhage for heart patients than at non-winning hospitals (20% fewer).

Winners of the 100 Top Hospitals award are categorized into three peer groups according to teaching and residency program status and are compared using publicly available performance data. Sentara Norfolk General Hospital's peer group is "Teaching Hospitals without Cardiovascular Residency Program."

"It is very gratifying to offer Hampton Roads the tremendous lifesaving skill of our doctors and staff in Norfolk. We are relentless in our efforts to prevent and treat the nation's number one killer of women and men in the U.S.," said Rodney F. Hochman, M.D., administrator of Sentara Norfolk General Hospital.

When compared to similar facilities that are also study winners, Sentara Norfolk General Hospital outperforms benchmark median hospitals in key areas by achieving:

* 16% higher heart attack success rate
* 54.9% higher percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA) success rate
* 54.9% higher coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) success rate
* 6.9% fewer complications from post-operative hemorrhage
* 101% higher PTCA volumes in 2000 and 2001
* 101% higher CABG volumes in 2000 and 2001

About Heart Care at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital

Sentara has a long-established history of treating heart disease. Since the cardiac program's inception at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital in 1967, clinicians and doctors have performed nearly 32,900 open-heart surgeries, 96,600 interventional procedures, and more than 212 heart transplants.

This acclaimed program has received national recognition in U.S. News & World Report's 2003 survey of America's Best Hospitals, most recently ranking 21st out of the top 50 U.S. hospitals named for cardiac care excellence in the country.

Sentara Norfolk General Hospital's heart program also ranks number one in Virginia for overall cardiac services according to HealthGrades®, a health care quality company. To further prevention and treatment options available to patients, Sentara continues to support national and international cardiac research trials each year. Sentara is building a state-of-the art, digital heart hospital-Sentara Heart Hospital-expected to open 2006. Find out more about Sentara's heart program.

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