News | Cardiovascular Business | October 15, 2018

American Heart Association and The Joint Commission Merge Cardiac Certification Programs

Streamlined comprehensive cardiac center certification will better serve hospitals

American Heart Association and The Joint Commission Merge Cardiac Certification Programs

October 15, 2018 — The nation’s two leading cardiac accreditation and certification organizations are joining forces to offer a single joint product for hospitals beginning Jan. 1, 2019. The American Heart Association and The Joint Commission, the largest standards-setting and accrediting body in healthcare, are collaborating to enhance cardiovascular patient care and improve outcomes and quality of life for patients with cardiovascular disease.

The certification program combines the AHA’s Cardiovascular Center of Excellence accreditation and its expertise in cardiovascular science, research and quality improvement, with The Joint Commission’s existing Comprehensive Cardiac Center Certification and expertise in working with healthcare organizations to evaluate care delivery that meets rigorous evidence-based standards and sustain improvements in patient care quality and outcomes. This joint cardiac certification award will be granted to hospitals that achieve rigorous standards of care. Hospitals will be required to deliver integrated, coordinated and patient-centered cardiac care and communications, from the emergency department visit to diagnosis, treatment and follow-up, and through outpatient care.

“American Heart Association and Joint Commission certification ensures that a hospital’s treatment practices and procedures meet the highest standards of cardiovascular care based on proven treatment guidelines,” commented Gregg C. Fonarow, M.D., FACC, FAHA, FHFSA, longtime American Heart Association volunteer and quality improvement leader and director of the Ahmanson-UCLA Cardiomyopathy Center at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. “Patients’ confidence and trust in their healthcare facilities increase when they know it has received approval from these two leading organizations.”

“The Joint Commission’s ongoing collaboration with the American Heart Association through Primary Stroke Center Certification, Comprehensive Stroke Center Certification, Acute Stroke Ready Certification, Thrombectomy-capable Stroke Center Certification, Advanced Certification for Heart Failure and now Comprehensive Cardiac Center Certification consolidates and strengthens certification options for our nation’s hospitals,” said Patrick Phelan, MBA, executive director, Hospital Business Development, The Joint Commission.

“Most importantly, together, we are ensuring the highest levels of support and expertise for our nation’s hospitals, working every day to most quickly and effectively translate the latest evidence-based science to the bedside — to save more lives and improve cardiovascular patients’ quality of life.”

Organizations currently certified or accredited under current Joint Commission or American Heart Association cardiac programs will automatically transition to the new combined certification. These organizations will undergo re-certification review at the end of their current certification cycle. Organizations seeking certification for the first time will undergo review under the new Joint Commission/American Heart Association Comprehensive Cardiac Center Certification criteria.

In the process of merging the two programs, The Joint Commission and the AHA reviewed both organization’s program requirements alongside the latest standards of practice, scientific guidelines and literature to identify opportunities to revise and strengthen standards in the areas of:

  • A collaborative model of care through effective comprehensive cardiac center management;
  • Continuous quality and systems improvement; and
  • Population health needs, including community education.

The Joint Commission and American Heart Association advanced certification program will maintain rigorous standards for:

  • Management of ischemic heart disease, acute myocardial infarction, percutaneous coronary interventions, coronary bypass graft surgery, cardiac valve disease, dysrhythmias, heart failure and cardiac arrest;
  • Cardiac rehabilitation of patients either onsite or by referral;
  • Standardized communication channels for patient transfers;
  • Properly trained staff to treat and care for individuals with cardiac disease;
  • Cardiovascular risk factor identification and cardiac disease prevention;
  • A minimum of 10 patients at the comprehensive cardiac center during the time of the onsite review; and
  • Use of Get With The Guidelines or a national quality improvement registry or similar data collection tool to monitor data and measure outcomes for specified conditions and procedures.

Pre-publication revisions to the Comprehensive Cardiac Center Certification standards, which become effective Jan. 1, 2019, are available here

For more information: www.jointcommission.org, www.heart.org

Related Content

Medicare Trustees Report Hospital Insurance Trust Fund Will Deplete in Seven Years
News | Cardiovascular Business | April 22, 2019
The Medicare Hospital Insurance (HI) Trust Fund, which funds Medicare Part A, will only be able to pay full benefits...
Videos | Cardiovascular Business | April 16, 2019
A discussion with Ruth Fisher, MBA, vice president of the...
Foreign-trained doctors now make up one-third of cardiologists in the United States and help make up for the U.S. overall shortage of physicians. Pictured here is co-author of this article Mandeep R. Mehra, MBBS, MSc, FRCP, who is an example of the contribution international physicians have made in the U.S. He is medical director of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital Heart and Vascular Center.

Foreign-trained doctors now make up one-third of cardiologists in the United States and help make up for the overall shortage of physicians. Pictured here is co-author of this article Mandeep R. Mehra, MBBS, MSc, FRCP, who is an example of the contribution international physicians have made in the U.S. He is medical director of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital Heart and Vascular Center, The William Harvey Distinguished Chair in Advanced Cardiovascular Medicine, and a professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School. He is past-president of both the Heart Failure Society of America and the International Society of Heart and Lung Transplantation. 

Feature | Cardiovascular Business | April 15, 2019 | William W. Pinsky, M.D., FAAP, FACC, and Mandeep R. Mehra, MBBS, MSc , FRCP
As we strive to process today’s successive news cycles involving negative reports about immigration, it is easy for m
ACC Combines NCDR, Accreditation Into New Quality Summit
News | Cardiovascular Business | March 15, 2019
The American College of Cardiology’s first annual ACC Quality Summit, held March 13-15 in New Orleans, merges the NCDR...
Diagnostic and Interventional Cardiology Named 2019 Azbee Awards Finalist for Social Media
News | Cardiovascular Business | March 08, 2019 | Jeff Zagoudis, Associate Editor
Diagnostic and Interventional Cardiology (DAIC) was named a finalist in the Social Media Presence category for the 2019...
 FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb Announces Resignation
News | Cardiovascular Business | March 05, 2019 | Jeff Zagoudis, Associate Editor
U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, M.D., resigned from his position March 5 after two...
Diagnostic and Interventional Cardiology Honored as Jesse H. Neal Awards Finalist

An example of the new transesophageal echo (TEE) visualization technology called TrueVue was shown at TCT 2018 for the first time. Philips’ new photo-realistic rendering is designed to offer a surgical view of cardiac structures to aid transcatheter procedural navigation.

News | Cardiovascular Business | February 25, 2019
Diagnostic and Interventional Cardiology has been recognized as a finalist in the Jesse H. Neal Awards for the third...
GE to Postpone Healthcare IPO Following Biopharmaceutical Business Sale
News | Cardiovascular Business | February 25, 2019 | Jeff Zagoudis, Associate Editor
GE Healthcare announced Feb. 25 the sale of its biopharmaceutical business to Danaher, and GE Chairman and CEO Larry...
Medical Bills Financially Burden Almost Half of Cardiovascular Disease Patients
News | Cardiovascular Business | February 11, 2019
Over 45 percent of adult atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) patients suffer financial hardship related to...
Overlay Init