Registries Within Mississippi’s STEMI and Stroke Systems of Care Get Funding Increase

Cardiovascular care in Mississippi recently secured a notable advocacy win with the passage of legislation to provide an additional $500,000 in funding for the Mississippi Department of Health (MSDH) to go toward registries within the state's ST Elevation Myocardial Infarction (STEMI) and Stroke Systems of Care.

Mississippi currently has three systems of care: the Trauma Network, the STEMI Network and, more recently, the Stroke Network. Each network is a Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) certified community plan.

The Trauma Network, approved by the MSDH in September 2008, was the state's first system of care. Participation in the Mississippi Trauma Care System is a condition of hospital licensure, and all hospitals with an emergency room are required to submit data to the state Trauma Registry.

The STEMI Network, approved in June 2011, was initiated after members of the ACC's Mississippi Chapter decided to bring back a previously existing hospital network focused on the prioritization of health outcomes in the state and the formation of the Mississippi Health Care Alliance. Data for the STEMI Network is collected through the ACC's ACTION Registry®—GWTG and reviewed at each quarterly meeting. Over a four-year time frame, this program has seen remarkable results, including an 18 percent drop in mortality rates.

The newest of the Mississippi systems of care, the Stroke Network, was approved in October 2013. By using a similar structure to the STEMI Network, the state is looking to improve stroke morbidity and mortality through the use of the American Heart Association's stroke registry.

The recently passed appropriations bill will provide much-needed funding to further enhance quality improvement efforts in the state, according to Thad Waites, MD, FACC, a member of the MSDH board and a member of the ACC's Board of Trustees and NCDR Management Board.Waites notes that a state law currently allows medical data that is used for quality improvement to be protected from any discovery, enabling hospitals to voluntarily choose to un-blind their data for quality improvement purposes. A contract has now been signed with NCDR that will allow the Healthcare Alliance, through the MSDH, to both gather data and form quality improvement programs from the now un-blinded data. This contract, coupled with increased funding, will allow the STEMI and Stroke networks to continue to make strides in performance improvement.

Keywords: American Heart Association, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, U.S., Emergency Service, Hospital, Licensure, Hospital, Medicaid, Medicare, Mississippi, Myocardial Infarction, Quality Improvement, Registries, National Cardiovascular Data Registries, ACTION Registry, Stroke

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