Allegheny General Hospital Named to Exclusive List of Nation’s 50 Top Centers for Cardiovascular Care

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When it comes to the treatment of cardiovascular disease, Allegheny General Hospital (AGH) is one of the nation’s preeminent medical centers based on overall quality and patient outcomes, according to a new report by leading healthcare industry analyst Thomson Reuters.

When it comes to the treatment of cardiovascular disease, Allegheny General Hospital (AGH) is one of the nation’s preeminent medical centers based on overall quality and patient outcomes, according to a new report by leading healthcare industry analyst Thomson Reuters. AGH is one of just six hospitals in the state, and the only quaternary level Pittsburgh area hospital named by Thomson Reuters to its exclusive list of the 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals for 2011.

AGH is also the only hospital in the greater Pittsburgh region and one of six in the nation to be lauded by both Thomson Reuters and US News and World Report for excellence in cardiovascular care.

According to Jean Chenowth, Senior Vice President for Performance Improvement and the 100 Top Hospitals® Program at Thomson Reuters, the 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals study singles out medical centers that consistently achieve superior clinical outcomes.

"This year's 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals have continued to deliver excellent care and have been able to improve their performance in a tough economic climate," said Chenoweth. "The hospitals in this study have provided measurably better care and are more efficient than their peers, demonstrating incredibly strong focus by hospital leadership at a time when the healthcare system is steeped in volatility."

AGH has earned the Thomson Reuters heart care distinction three times, demonstrating a consistency of patient care excellence that has long distinguished the hospital, said George Magovern, MD, a nationally recognized AGH heart surgeon and Chair of the Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery program at the West Penn Allegheny Health System.

“We are extremely pleased to be recognized once again by Thomson Reuters for the outstanding cardiovascular care that we provide to our patients. Thomson Reuters bases its ranking of hospitals solely on objective patient outcomes data. As a hospital that serves as a regional referral center for patients with the most complex cardiovascular problems, it is most gratifying that our performance continues to measure among the best the nation has to offer,” said Dr. Magovern.

AGH is one of only 15 teaching hospitals with cardiovascular residency programs in the country to make the Thomson Reuters Top 50 Cardiovascular Hospitals list. Among other elite academic medical centers recognized by Thomson Reuters in 2011 include the Mayo Clinic, NYU Langone Medical Center, the University of Kansas and the Lahey Clinic.    

To conduct its study, Thomson Reuters analyzed 2009 and 2010 Medicare and Medicaid patient outcomes at 1,036 US hospitals that treat a broad spectrum of cardiology patients, including those requiring medical management and those who receive invasive procedures such as coronary angioplasty, stenting and heart bypass surgery.

The analysis closely examined the outcomes of patients with two of the most common cardiovascular conditions – coronary atherosclerosis, including heart attack, and heart failure.
At the country’s highest performing hospitals like AGH, patient outcomes in the Thomson Reuters study were markedly better. For instance, Top 50 hospitals showed:

  •     Significantly better risk-adjusted survival rates (including 23% fewer deaths following coronary artery bypass surgery than peer hospitals)
  •     Significantly lower risk-adjusted complication rates (including 40% lower rate of heart failure complications)
  •     Fewer patients readmitted to hospital after 30 days.
  •     Shorter hospital visits and lower costs. Top 50 hospitals discharge patients nearly a full day sooner and spend 12% less per bypass case than peer hospitals.
  •     96% compliance with recommended use of internal mammary artery for coronary artery bypass surgery.

“This latest recognition for the exceptional healthcare services at AGH and the West Penn Allegheny Health System further underscores the importance of these vital institutions to the people of western Pennsylvania. It takes an extraordinary commitment to clinical excellence and a lot of hard work to earn national recognition from Thomson Reuters and we are most proud of our cardiovascular staff and what they have accomplished on behalf of our patients,” said Keith T. Ghezzi, MD, Interim President and Chief Executive Officer of WPAHS.

Srinivas Murali, MD, Director, Division of Cardiovascular Medicine at AGH and Medical Director of the hospital’s Gerald McGinnis Cardiovascular Institute, said the Thomson Reuters designation is indeed another milestone in the hospital’s long history as preeminent cardiovascular hospital and a firm testament to what makes AGH unique in the community.

“We are blessed with an incredibly talented and dedicated team of physicians, nurses and support staff who work closely together to provide our patients with a level of highly sophisticated and personalized cardiovascular care that is unparalleled in this region. When a patient walks through the doors of our cardiovascular institute they can be assured that they are surrounded by all of the technical and professional resources necessary to ensure the best possible outcome for their disease.”

AGH’s Gerald McGinnis Cardiovascular Institute ( is a state-of-the-art facility that offers the full spectrum of diagnostic and therapeutic cardiovascular care. Disease specific centers within the McGinnis Institute afford patients access to specialists in congestive heart failure, heart transplantation, heart valve disease, electrophysiology, cardiovascular imaging, interventional cardiology, pulmonary hypertension, vascular surgery, wound healing and lymphedema.


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