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Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center Secures Leading Certification for Heart Valve Procedure

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HOUSTON, TX (September 13, 2021) – Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center (Baylor St. Luke’s) has achieved the Transcatheter Valve Certification from the American College of Cardiology (ACC), which recognizes the hospital for upholding the best patient-care practices in transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) procedures.

No other structural heart program in Houston has achieved the prestigious designation, which ACC conferred this summer. Only three other facilities in Texas have the certification.

“With the ACC certification in place, patients can have confidence that proven quality drives our team and its organization,” said Lisa Wall, structural heart coordinator at Baylor St. Luke’s. “The certification underscores the sheer volume of careful, individualized attention we thread throughout our processes in every aspect of the cardiac program.”

Baylor St. Luke’s completed 286 TAVR procedures in 2020. The minimally invasive operation treats aortic stenosis, the narrowing of the aortic valve opening that eventually reduces the heart's ability to pump blood to the body. It involves implanting a new valve within the damaged one. Similar to introducing a stent, the procedure is completed by introducing the valve through a catheter that prevents a more traditional open-heart operation.

Patients who undergo a TAVR at Baylor St. Luke’s return for check-ups at one month and one year after the procedure, but they don’t have to switch cardiologists for their routine care, Wall said. A multidisciplinary committee at the medical center meets every week to develop and review an individualized plan of the care for each TAVR patient.

Securing the ACC Center of Excellence designation is a labor-intensive process that requires several levels of cardiac-related certifications and detailed reviews of organizational structure, Wall said. In its certification letter, ACC spotlighted Baylor St. Luke’s achievement of multiple certifications and accreditations from the college over the past several years. It noted strong leadership of the facility’s structural heart program, among other highlights.

Baylor St. Luke’s also has secured the highest rating — three stars — from ACC for the outcomes of its TAVR procedures.

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About St. Luke’s Health – Texas Division

St. Luke’s Health is a fully-integrated network that provides care to the communities in Greater Houston, East Texas, and the Brazos Valley through 16 acute care hospitals and over 270 access points including numerous urgent care centers, freestanding emergency departments, and clinics conveniently located across the region. With a team of 11,000 employees and caregivers and more than 5,000 physicians, St. Luke’s Health is dedicated to a mission of enhancing community health through high-quality, cost-effective care. A joint venture with Baylor College of Medicine, St. Luke’s Health operates Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center in the Texas Medical Center, a leading academic health center with quaternary care and advanced specialists. St. Luke’s Health is part of CommonSpirit Health, a nonprofit, Catholic health system dedicated to advancing health for all people. CommonSpirit was created in February 2019 through the alignment of Catholic Health Initiatives and Dignity Health. Learn more at StLukesHealth.org.

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