An award designed to recognize outstanding cardiovascular health promotion programs in Texas, especially those using evidence-based practices, was recently bestowed upon the East Texas Heart and Vascular Initiative, a partnership between Memorial Medical Center – Lufkin and The Methodist Hospital, Houston DeBakey Heart and Vascular Center. The Texas Council on Cardiovascular Disease and Stroke recently recognized the Initiative titled “And The Beat Goes On” with the Texas Cardiovascular Health Promotion Outstanding Program Award.
The East Texas Heart and Vascular Initiative is an effort to elevate the level of heart and vascular care to the residents of deep East Texas by offering the most up-to-date treatment methods and the best practices in caring for heart patients.
“We strive every day to provide our patients with lifesaving interventions, in the fastest way possible,” said Angela Hess, RN and Stroke/Chest Pain Coordinator at Memorial Medical Center – Lufkin. “The statistics we see from the program tell us that we are making a significant impact. We have been able to significantly reduce our times for door to balloon time for STEMI (ST segment elevation myocardial infarction) and door to ECG (electrocardiogram) for all acute coronary syndrome (ACS) patients since the inception of the initiative.”
The Heart & Vascular Initiative also provides extensive community outreach and heart and vascular disease education. Community Education Coordinator, Sabrina Lillard, RN, provides education and valuable information to the public in order to increase awareness and teach prevention strategies for heart and vascular disease.
“We have reached more than 4,000 people with the educational component within the community and more than 2,500 in-house staff have taken part in educational opportunities offered,” stated Lillard. “Education can not only be a determining factor in saving a life but it can also significantly increase prevention of heart and vascular disease.”
The purpose of the Texas Cardiovascular Health Promotion Awards is to recognize innovative, effective programs and policies for prevention and/or awareness of cardiovascular disease and/or stroke in Texas communities. Awards may be given in one of four categories such as community-based organizations, schools, worksites and healthcare entities. Evaluators seek programs that have established specific policies, created environmental/systems changes or implemented behavior change that contribute to healthier lifestyles and the education of heart disease, stroke and related risk factors. The evaluation is done on a point system where programs scoring 90-100 earn an Outstanding Program Award and 80-89 earn an Honorable Mention Award. Seven programs in Texas earned the Outstanding Program Award with Memorial Medical Center – Lufkin being the only program in Deep East Texas awarded.
Cardiovascular disease and stroke are the leading causes of death in Texas. Increase in the rates of physical inactivity, poor dietary choices, diabetes, high blood cholesterol and obesity, as well as the continued high prevalence of hypertension and the use of tobacco contribute to these diseases each year.
Cutline: The East Texas Heart and Vascular Initiative was recently awarded the Texas Cardiovascular Health Promotion Outstanding Program Award through the Texas Council on Cardiovascular Disease and Stroke. The initiative is a partnership between Memorial Medical Center – Lufkin and The Methodist Hospital, Houston DeBakey Heart and Vascular Center. Members of the chest pain center committee at Memorial Medical Center – Lufkin include, from left, Richard Fennell, RN, ICU Nurse Manager; Suzanne Monsour, Project Manager; Dr. Musa Khan, Chest Pain Program Medical Director; Stacy Garcia, RN, CNO; Angela Hess, RN, Stroke/Chest Pain Coordinator; Rhonda Stephenson, RN, Quality Analyst; Cheryl Bennett, Respiratory Therapist; Anita Gottlieb, System Director of Quality; Sabrina Lillard, RN, Community Educator and Sandy Martinez, RN, ICU Nurse.