Baptist Health Richmond announced today, it will be able to perform lifesaving heart care 24/7 through a procedure called “angioplasty.” Moments matter when anyone suffers a heart attack. The first step in improving your chances of survival during a heart attack is to recognize the symptoms of a heart attack. The second step is to call 9-1-1. The third step is to get to the closest hospital that can provide life-saving heart care.
“When it comes to a heart attack, time is muscle,” said Ananth Kumar, MD, Medical Director of Interventional Cardiology.
During a heart attack, a clot forms in an artery supplying blood to the heart and blocks blood flow to that area of heart muscle. The portion of the heart muscle deprived of blood and oxygen is damaged. This is called a “myocardial infarction,” more commonly known as a heart attack. The amount of lasting damage to the heart muscle depends on a number of factors—the size of the clot, the location of the clot, and how long the clot blocks blood flow to the muscle. The longer the heart muscle is without blood and oxygen, the more extensive the damage to the muscle and the greater the size of the heart attack.
In order to preserve heart muscle, angioplasty (the procedure is sometimes called percutaneous coronary intervention,” or PCI) allows normal blood flow to be restored to the injured heart muscle within minutes. This minimally invasive procedure is performed in a cardiac catheterization laboratory by specially trained cardiologist. Angioplasty may involve the placement of a small wire device called a “stent.” A stent is shaped somewhat like the spring of a ballpoint pen and may be inserted into the artery to help it remain open after a clot is removed.
Baptist Health Richmond received State Certificate of Need (CON) approval to perform life-saving, percutaneous coronary intervention (angioplasty) for patients coming to the hospital’s Emergency Department having a heart attack.
“Our CON approval for emergency PCI builds upon our accreditation as a Chest Pain Center,” said Todd Jones, President at Baptist Health Richmond. “We offer fast diagnosis and treatment for patients coming to our Emergency Department with signs and symptoms of a heart attack. Our dedicated physicians and staff work hard to provide our community with high quality, compassionate heart care.”
The State approval led to a new state-of-the-art cath lab for the interventional procedures at Baptist Health. “The people of Madison and surrounding counties deserve access to the gold standard for emergent heart care. We are proud to offer this service here in Richmond. Through our partnership with EMS, we know lives will be saved and our community will benefit from this advanced heart care,” said Jones.
According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS), the gold standard to open the artery is 90 minutes from arrival in the Emergency Department. Not only will Baptist Health Richmond be able to provide this level of service, they will be able to help facilitate the same quality service for neighboring communities like Berea, Irvine, Mt. Vernon, McKee and Lancaster.