Sentara College of Health Sciences to offer Associates Degree for Cardiovascular Technology (CVT) Program
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Sentara College of Health Sciences to offer Associates Degree for Cardiovascular Technology (CVT) Program 

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CHESAPEAKE, VA. (April 29, 2010)  Students studying Cardiovascular Technology (CVT) at the Sentara College of Health Sciences will now be awarded an Associates of Occupational Science Degree upon graduation.

Cardiovascular technologists are allied health professionals who work directly with physicians and surgeons to perform diagnostic and therapeutic procedures in the laboratory setting. Their assistance has become vital in the growing trend toward non-surgical solutions for a variety of cardiac and vascular diseases.

The Sentara College of Health Sciences Cardiovascular Technology Program began in 1982 to provide trained professionals in the fields of invasive and non-invasive cardiovascular medicine. The Program offers three specialties in cardiovascular technology and prepares students to function in the specialty of their choice.

“We are proud of our track record for training and graduating highly skilled professionals to work in the field of cardiac medicine,” Says Shelly Cohen, dean of the Sentara College of Health Sciences. “We are happy to be expanding our offerings to better meet the needs of the professional and the fields of cardiac and vascular technology.”

Going forward, students in the CVT program will now graduate with an Associates of Occupation Science in one of four concentrations: Adult Echocardiography; Invasive Cardiovascular Technology; or Non-Invasive Peripheral Vascular Sonography.

Cardiovascular disease is the number one killer in the United States and the number of cases is expected to rise as the population ages. Due to the increased use of diagnostic imaging, the US Department Bureau of Labor Statistics has reported cardiovascular technologists as one of the fastest growing occupations through 2014.

In July of 2009, the Sentara College of Health Sciences received approval from its accrediting agency and the Virginia Board of Nursing to begin offering a Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree (BSN). Sentara expects to graduate its first BSN class in May of 2012.

In addition to its CVT and BSN degree programs, the Sentara College of Health Sciences will continue to offer diploma and certificate programs for a host of disciplines, including surgical technology. As part of the Sentara integrated health care system, all students attending the College of Health Sciences gain clinical experience through the various acute care settings within the Sentara system. Many student experiences are provided at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, the region’s only level I trauma center and major referral center for patient care.

With an ever increasing role for technology in the healthcare setting, most nursing and allied health professionals entering the field today will need to have proficient technology skills to aid in the delivery of care. In recent years, Sentara has implemented the area’s most comprehensive electronic medical record system, Sentara eCareÒ. Clinical exposure for students of the Sentara College of Health Sciences will include working on this robust system as part of the care delivery process.

“It is not only important to teach the fundamental skills in the classroom, but we must ensure that we are preparing students to transition into the workplace of today,” adds Cohen. “Our clinical settings provide that opportunity and students graduate with hands on experience in some of the most state of the art facilities in the region today.”

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