Cardiovascular Rounds

News, resources, and analysis from the Cardiovascular Roundtable

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Cardiovascular 'tumor boards:' Adventist's innovative approach to multidisciplinary care

By Julie Bass January 28, 2015

It is not breaking news that the prevalence of chronic disease is growing. The expanding co-morbid and complex CV population is straining the ability for a single provider, or even a service line, to suitably care for patients across the care continuum.

Patients frequently see multiple providers both inside and outside the CV service line, making effective multidisciplinary collaboration strategies crucial to the future of CV programs, especially as we move away from the fee-for-service environment.

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CV guidelines in the palm of your hand

by Julie Bass December 29, 2014

What better way to get rid of those little handbooks in your coat pocket than to have all the guidelines you need right at your fingertips?

Professional societies are catching up to speed with physician demand and are finding ways to make key clinical guidelines, including appropriate use criteria (AUC), more accessible. One strategy is mobile apps for smart phones and tablets with collocated guidelines that can be used at the point of care.

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How a dedicated CV patient experience role can benefit your service line

by Julie Bass December 22, 2014

Patient satisfaction is increasingly top of mind for hospital executives, particularly given its recent inclusion in value-based purchasing, and ability to gain a competitive edge in attracting empowered patient consumers. In fact, last year almost one quarter of organizations created chief experience officer (CExO) positions designed to have direct accountability for patient experience.

Our colleagues over on the Marketing and Planning Leadership Council recently highlighted key lessons for organizations considering adding a CExO at the system-level.  For the Cardiovascular Roundtable, a "mini CExO" within the CV service line can have tangible benefits, as in the case of Akron General Medical Center.

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The new definition of cardiovascular leadership

by Andrew Hresko November 13, 2014

During our research on cardiovascular service line leadership structures for our recently launched 2014-2015 Cardiovascular Roundtable national meeting, we often heard that CV administrator’s responsibilities and required skills sets are rapidly changing.

Not long ago, CV administrators focused primarily on service line operations. Key responsibilities included personnel management, improving patient throughput, and acting as the go-to-person when crises in patient care or staff relations arose.

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Readmission penalty increases to 3%—are you prepared?

by Olivia Ley October 28, 2014

While it might be hard to believe we’re entering the third year of the Readmission Reduction Program, the new ruling announcing an increase in the maximum penalty from its initial 1% (2013) to 3% beginning in 2015 is a clear signal from CMS that performance expectations have been raised.

The good news? The Cardiovascular Roundtable has created an easy to use, objective oriented, toolkit to help you overcome the most common readmission reduction challenges.

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Would you be my (medical home) neighbor?

October 8, 2014

Just last month, the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) recognized the 8,000th patient-centered medical home – and that’s just the number of medical homes that are formally recognized, not including the many that operate without formal recognition. The role of primary care is emphasized in many of the care transformation efforts, such as medical homes and ACOs.

In fact, our colleagues over on the Medical Group Strategy Council just posted a great blog explaining the difference between a number of these clinical care redesign efforts, including the patient-centered medical home model.

However, the increasing popularity of these primary care-focused entities has left a lot of our members wondering “What is CV’s role in primary care redesign?”

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Some love below the heart: New guidelines for appropriate use of peripheral vascular interventions

by Julie Bass September 8, 2014

CV services are facing increasing scrutiny over the appropriateness of diagnostic tests and procedures, coupled with pressure to contain costs while improving quality.

As a result, CV leaders must develop strategies to right-size utilization, and ensure each service is provided for the right patient at the right time.

Related: Our webconference on appropriate use in CV services

Fortunately, medical societies continue to offer increasing support through appropriate use criteria (AUC), which CV programs can implement to ensure principled utilization. However, the focus had been primarily on coronary procedures, largely overlooking peripheral vascular interventions—until now.

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Ready to 'FoCUS'? We explain the new guidance for focused cardiac ultrasound

by Julie Bass August 22, 2014

The World Interactive Network Focused on Critical UltraSound (WINFOCUS) recently released the first international evidence-based guidance on the use of focused cardiac ultrasound (FoCUS)—a form of echocardiography primarily used in critical care settings. Creation of these guidelines was important to standardize situations in which FoCUS is acceptable, as well as detail who is qualified to utilize the tool.

It took a multidisciplinary team of 33 experts from 16 countries several years to complete, but the collaboration yielded 108 statements and recommendations.

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