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Vaughan becomes accredited chest pain center

Vaughan Regional Medical Center pose for a photo in the cath lab. The staff accomplished in gaining Chest Pain Center Accreditation for the hospital. Pictured from left to right, back to front: Chrystal Payne, RN; Patricia Hannon, RN PHD CNO; Keith Bradley, RN; Lesley Wininger, ACNO; David McCormack, CEO; Patrick Williams, CVT I; Hope Willison, RN; Dr. Steven Allyn; Ann Sturgis, RN; Holly Tubbs, RN; and Derek Stevenson, CVT I. Not pictured: Kay Averette, RN and cath lab director. — Emily Enfinger

Vaughan Regional Medical Center pose for a photo in the cath lab. The staff accomplished in gaining Chest Pain Center Accreditation for the hospital. Pictured from left to right, back to front: Chrystal Payne, RN; Patricia Hannon, RN PHD CNO; Keith Bradley, RN; Lesley Wininger, ACNO; David McCormack, CEO; Patrick Williams, CVT I; Hope Willison, RN; Dr. Steven Allyn; Ann Sturgis, RN; Holly Tubbs, RN; and Derek Stevenson, CVT I. Not pictured: Kay Averette, RN and cath lab director. — Emily Enfinger

Vaughan Regional Medical Center can now better provide for its patients with its newest accreditation.

The hospital has received Chest Pain Center Accreditation from the Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care (SCPC), an international non-profit organization focused on transforming cardiovascular care.

“For all of the staff to accomplish this was really very good,” said cardiologist Dr. Steven Allyn. “They put a lot of effort into it and a lot of it was on their own time. It’s all directed toward providing better patient care.”

Work for the new accreditation began in February 2015.

Holly Tubbs, registered nurse and cardiovascular performance improvement coordinator, said the process for the accreditation was tedious.

Staff had to undergo various trainings and provide community outreach education such as early heart attack care.

With the accreditation, patients can expect a more thorough treatment that isn’t a standard in all hospitals.

“When our patients come in here, we have a standard,” Tubbs said. “We have tons of flow charts, new policies and procedures just to make sure the patients are taken care of in a timely manner.”

The strict criteria is aimed at reducing the time from onset of symptoms to diagnosis and treatment; treating patients more quickly during the critical window of time when the integrity of the heart muscle can be preserved; and monitoring patients when it is uncertain they are having a heart attack to ensure they are not sent home too quickly or needlessly admitted to the hospital.

“The average patient arrives in the emergency department more than two hours after the onset of symptoms, but what they don’t realize is that the sooner a heart attack is treated, the less damage to the heart and the better the outcome for the patient,” said hospital CEO David McCormack in a press release.

“With our new accreditation, we hope to bring greater awareness to the importance of timely care and help even more people in central Alabama.”

“We worked really hard on it all year long,” Tubbs said. “At the end of the day, we knew it was good for us [and] good for our patients.”