Sentara Hospitals Receive VHA Leadership Awards for Clinical Excellence
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Sentara Hospitals Receive VHA Leadership Awards for Clinical Excellence 

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Three Sentara Hospitals were chosen from among hospitals nationwide to receive the 2005 VHA Leadership Award for Clinical Excellence. VHA Inc., a national health care provider alliance based in Irving, Texas, has recognized Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, Sentara Bayside Hospital and Sentara Leigh Hospital for excellence in cardiac and surgical care. The three hospitals were among 92 VHA member hospitals nationwide to receive the award, which were presented to Sentara May 15 at VHAs annual leadership conference in Atlanta.

"These awards validate the dedicated focus of our clinical staff and physicians to improve care to cardiac and surgical patients," said David Bernd, Sentara Healthcare chief executive officer. "By consistently adopting and applying practices with proven results, we help ensure the healthiest possible outcomes for all patients entrusted in our care. Consistent monitoring and measuring of outcomes allows us to concentrate efforts on specific procedures to improve patient well-being."

The VHA 2005 Leadership Award for Clinical Excellence is based on the latest set of measures nationally accepted as quality indicators.

"Our participation in VHAs cardiac and surgical care programs helped us achieve higher levels of performance in these aspects of patient care," said Gary Yates, M.D., Sentara chief medical officer. "Those in the community who depend on us for their health care can be assured we will continue seeking ways to enhance care and improve their well-being."

Sentara Norfolk General Hospital and Sentara Leigh Hospital

The cardiac care teams of both hospitals achieved above average rates of compliance with national best practice standards in treating heart attack patients (patients with acute myocardial infarction). These standards include: 

*Aspirin prescribed at time of patients arrival and discharge 
* Angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEI) for left ventricular systolic dysfunction (LVSD) 
* Smoking cessation advice/counseling 
* Beta blocker prescribed at time of patients discharge and arrival 
* Amount of time until thrombolysis administered 
* Amount of time until percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA) administered

Sentara Norfolk General Hospital and Sentara Leigh Hospital achieved at least a 90 percent compliance with all rate-based indicators to qualify for the award. The median time for delivery of thrombolytic agents was equal to or less than 30 minutes. The median time until PTCA was administered to the patient was equal to or less than 120 minutes.

Sentara Bayside Hospital

The surgical team at Sentara Bayside was commended for above average compliance with nationally accepted rate-based indicators designed to prevent infections following surgery. To ensure proper outcomes, hospitals must focus on issues such as: 
* Duration of prophylaxis 
* Selection of antibiotic administration 
* Timing of antibiotic administration

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