Heart Failure Patients at Bronson to Benefit From New Program - Bronson Healthcare

Published on October 27, 2008

Bronson Methodist Hospital has received funding for Get With The Guidelines – Heart Failure Minigrant Project sponsored by the Michigan Department of Community Health. A Web-based program created to improve the quality of care for hospitalized heart failure patients; Bronson is the only hospital in southwest Michigan to receive the $3,500 in funding.

“Early diagnosis of heart failure is essential, as Bronson has treated nearly 700 cases of heart failure in the last year,” said Melissa Muller, Bronson cardiovascular service line administrator. “It’s important for our staff to help families understand their condition, medication, treatment option, and outcomes. We are excited to begin this program as this grant is intended to provide resources to help educate patients and their families.”

Get With The Guidelines – Heart Failure is based on the American Cardiology / American Heart Association heart failure guidelines. It aims to help ensure that patients are initiated on guideline recommended therapies and receive appropriate counseling prior to being discharged from the hospital.

Education is an important part of the care provided to patients with heart failure both in the hospital and after discharge. Teaching patients about their medications, diet, activity level, the importance of weight monitoring and what to do if symptoms worsen prepares them for having an improved quality of life after discharge. Other benefits include reduced hospital admissions and reduced complications.

Heart failure affects nearly 5 million adults in the United States. It is on the rise with an estimated 400,000 to 700,000 new cases each year. Heart failure is the leading cause of hospitalization for patients over the age of 65 and the costs related to treatment and care can be overwhelming.

Prevention and early detection are essential in the treatment of heart failure. Treatment should be aggressive in the early stages, especially for patients with risk factors such as diabetes or smoking.

For two straight years, Bronson has earned a five-star rating for the treatment of heart failure by Healthgrades®;, one of the nation's leading authorities on hospital performance.

In addition to this recognition, VHA has also recognized Bronson with its 2007 Leadership Award for Clinical Excellence based on performance at the 90 percent or above level on clinical core measures in surgical complications and infection prevention, as well as its 2005 & 2007 Leadership Award for operational excellence.