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The Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions (SCAI) and the American College of Cardiology Foundation (ACCF) today announced an agreement to jointly sponsor the Accreditation for Cardiovascular Excellence (ACE) organization. Founded by SCAI in May 2010, ACE provides professional review of facilities where invasive cardiac and endovascular procedures are performed and will accredit those that achieve predetermined benchmarks for quality care. Recent studies in Health Affairs and other journals have shown accreditation improves patient outcomes and promotes progress toward enhanced patient safety standards.
This month, ACE began providing accreditation to hospitals performing carotid artery stenting (CAS) procedures and plans to expand to programs that perform other cardiovascular procedures, including percutaneous coronary interventions (PCI). Multiple CAS program applications are already in process.
“SCAI and the ACC share a common commitment to promoting high-quality, evidence-based care for cardiovascular patients,” said Bonnie Weiner, M.D., MSEC, MBA, FSCAI, CMO and chair of ACE’s Board of Directors, and director of interventional cardiology research at Saint Vincent Hospital at Worcester Medical Center, Worcester, Mass. “We are very pleased to welcome the ACC as a partner and a sponsor of ACE, and we look forward to working together to ensure patients continue to receive excellent cardiovascular care.”
“We are thrilled to be a partner on the ACE program and look forward to working with SCAI to advance quality and provide for even better patient outcomes in invasive cardiovascular care facilities across the country,” said Ralph Brindis, M.D., MPH, president of the ACC.
Designed to promote and uphold high-quality patient care and improve patient safety in facilities, ACE offers independent evaluation of facilities’ processes and objective peer review of outcomes based on established benchmarks derived from scientific evidence in peer-reviewed medical literature and national practice guidelines. Applicants complete a comprehensive application followed by a site visit from ACE’s team of expert reviewers who assess the facility itself, its personnel, quality assurance and safety protocols, patient indications and outcomes. This standardized, unbiased assessment ensures quality patient care.
Programs that achieve full accreditation are recognized by ACE for two years, at which time their facility must be reviewed again for continued recognition. ACE also provides tools and guidance for quality improvement and is committed to helping facilities achieve the highest standards of care.
“ACE allows us to set a benchmark for quality by assessing facilities on an individual, case-by-case basis,” said Larry S. Dean, M.D., FSCAI, SCAI president, director of the UW Medicine Regional Heart Center and professor of Medicine and Surgery at the UW School of Medicine. “The ACE program is a critical element of our continued focus on quality improvement in cardiovascular patient care.”
“By developing accreditation standards in this area, we are taking further steps toward our goal of providing excellent care in all facilities where invasive cardiac procedures are performed,” said Jack Lewin, M.D., CEO of the ACC.
Facilities seeking ACE accreditation can obtain more information and complete the application process at www.cvexcel.org.
The Accreditation for Cardiovascular Excellence is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to ensure high-quality patient care and promote patient safety in facilities where invasive cardiac and endovascular procedures are performed. ACE will achieve its mission by setting standards for quality care, establishing requirements for accreditation, and providing peer review of cardiac and endovascular programs. ACE will also provide tools and resources to support self-evaluation and quality improvement. For more information about ACE, visit www.cvexcel.org.
The Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions is a 4,000-member professional organization representing invasive and interventional cardiologists in approximately 70 nations. SCAI’s mission is to promote excellence in invasive and interventional cardiovascular medicine through physician education and representation, and advancement of quality standards to enhance patient care. For more information about SCAI, visit www.scai.org or www.seconds-count.org.
The American College of Cardiology is leading the way to optimal cardiovascular care and disease prevention. The College is a 39,000-member nonprofit medical society and bestows the credential Fellow of the American College of Cardiology upon physicians who meet its stringent qualifications. The College is a leader in the formulation of health policy, standards and guidelines, and is a staunch supporter of cardiovascular research. The ACC provides professional education and operates national registries for the measurement and improvement of quality care. More information about the association is available online at www.acc.org.