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NJHA Marks National Heart Failure Week
Date:2/10/2009

Quality Effort Yields Results in Heart Care for Minorities

PRINCETON, N.J., Feb. 10 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Just in time for this week's observance of National Heart Failure Week, the New Jersey Hospital Association's Expecting Success in Cardiac Care initiative is rapidly approaching its goal of reducing heart failure in African Americans and Latinos.

Studies show that African Americans have higher death rates than whites for both heart disease and stroke. In addition, preventable hospital rates in New Jersey for heart failure and angina are highest among Latinos. Heart failure is a leading cause of hospitalization.

In response to those troubling trends, 10 New Jersey hospitals have banded together in an intensive two-year effort to improve care and outcomes for African American and Latino heart patients. Each of the 10 hospitals is identifying, testing and adopting interventions and new strategies to deliver better inpatient care, coupled with efforts to improve care in communities that support patients once they leave the hospital.

New data capturing the first year of the initiative shows that participating hospitals have demonstrated consistent improvement in several patient care areas. These are national measures designed to show how well hospitals are complying with proven best practices. Results include:

  • Making sure patients received adequate discharge instructions increased from 75 percent to 99.5 percent.
  • Ensuring that patients were discharged from the hospital with the proper prescriptions improved by over 11 percent from 83.7 percent to 95 percent.
  • Patients receiving counseling on smoking cessation rose from 97. 4 percent to full compliance of 100 percent.

Funded by a $3.5 million grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the 10 participating hospitals work to
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SOURCE New Jersey Hospital Association
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