Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield has selected five Sentara Healthcare hospitals as Blue Distinction Centers for Spine Surgery.

5 hospitals earn spine surgery Blue Distinction

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Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield has selected the following Sentara Healthcare hospitals as Blue Distinction Centers for Spine Surgery, as part of the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program: 

  • Sentara CarePlex Hospital
  • Sentara Leigh Hospital
  • Sentara Norfolk General Hospital
  • Sentara Princess Anne Hospital
  • Sentara Virginia Beach General Hospital

Blue Distinction Centers are nationally designated healthcare facilities shown to deliver improved patient safety and better health outcomes, based on objective measures that were developed by Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies with input from the medical community.

Spinal surgeries are one of the most frequent types of elective surgeries in the U.S. According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, there were more than 465,000 spinal fusion operations in the U.S. in 2011, a procedure commonly done in the lumbar region of the lower back to treat back pain.

Hospitals designated as Blue Distinction Centers for Spine Surgery demonstrate expertise in cervical and lumbar fusion, cervical laminectomy and lumbar laminectomy/discectomy procedures, resulting in fewer patient complications and hospital readmissions compared to other hospitals. Designated hospitals must also maintain national accreditation to be designated.

Sentara is proud of these hospitals for being recognized by Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield for meeting the rigorous selection criteria for spine surgery set by the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program.

“Achieving excellence in our orthopedic and neuroscience services – specifically in our Sentara Back & Neck Centers – is an important focus for Sentara,” said Carole Guinane, Vice President, Sentara Orthopedic Services.  “Our Dedicated Spine Navigator helps provide education and assistance for our patients before, during and after surgery, our proven clinical pathways help motivate patients to be mobile sooner for faster recovery and we have innovative methods for managing pain to help with ongoing recovery.  We appreciate Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield’s recognition of the hard work and dedication our teams apply to these efforts every day.”

Since 2006, the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program has helped patients find quality providers for their specialty care needs in the areas of bariatric surgery, cardiac care, complex and rare cancers, knee and hip replacements, maternity care, spine surgery, and transplants, while encouraging healthcare professionals to improve the care they deliver.

For more information about the program and for a complete listing of the designated facilities, please visit www.bcbs.com/bluedistinction.