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Spokane Congenital Heart Program Earns Accreditation

October 02, 2017

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  • Providence Health & Services
    Elizabeth DeRuyter
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  • Adult Congenital Heart Association
    Chris Murray
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Providence Adult and Teen Congenital Heart Program at Sacred Heart Medical Center & Children’s Hospital is among first in the nation to earn ACHA accreditation

Spokane, WA—In recognition of its comprehensive expertise in serving adults with congenital heart disease (CHD), the Providence Adult and Teen Congenital Heart Program (PATCH) at Sacred Heart Medical Center & Children’s Hospital has received accreditation from the Adult Congenital Heart Association (ACHA). It is one of only 11 centers in the country to be accredited by ACHA, a nationwide organization focused on connecting patients, family members and health care providers to form a community of support and network of experts with knowledge of congenital heart disease.

Congenital heart disease is the most common birth defect, diagnosed in one in 100 births. “However, as a result of advancements in care of individuals with congenital heart disease and coordination of that care among specialists, our patients are living longer than ever before,” says Jeremy Nicolarsen, M.D., director of Providence Adult and Teen Congenital Heart Program. There are now 1.4 million adults in the U.S. living with one of the many different types of congenital heart defects that range among simple, moderate, and complex.

In fact, says Mark Roeder, President and CEO of ACHA, “There are now more adults than children in the U.S. with CHD. Accreditation will elevate the standard of care and have a positive impact on the futures of those living with this disease. Coordination of care is key, and this accreditation program will make care more streamlined for ACHD patients, improving their quality of life.”

Providence Adult and Teen Congenital Heart Program received accreditation by meeting ACHA’s criteria, which included medical services and personnel requirements, and going through a rigorous accreditation process, both of which were developed over a number of years through a collaboration with doctors, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, nurses and ACHD patients.

“This is an extensive accreditation process that clearly spotlights the comprehensive services available within the Providence Adult and Teen Congenital Heart Program. This includes not only the specially trained pediatric and adult cardiologists, but the multiple sub-specialists, technology and wrap-around services that allow us to provide the highest level of care to patients of every age,” adds Dr. Nicolarsen.

In addition to its main clinic on the fourth floor of Sacred Heart Children’s Hospital in Spokane, Drs. Chris Anderson, Pamela Burg, Janice Christensen, Carl Garabedian, Hrair Garabedian and Jeremy Nicolarsen, along with Katrina Schneider, PA-C, provide patient care at outreach clinics in Richland and Moses Lake, Washington, and Post Falls, Idaho.

The other 10 centers around the country that have earned the ACHA ACHD Accredited Comprehensive Care Center designation include:

  • Ahmanson/UCLA Adult Congenital Heart Disease Center (Los Angeles, CA)
  • Adult Congenital Heart Program, Stanford University (Palo Alto, CA)
  • Colorado's Adult & Teen Congenital Heart Program (CATCH) (Denver, CO)
  • Boston Adult Congenital Heart (BACH) and Pulmonary Hypertension Program (Boston, MA)
  • University of Michigan Adult Congenital Heart Program (Ann Arbor, MI)
  • Center for Adults with Congenital Heart Disease (St. Louis, MO)
  • Midwest & Omaha Congenital Heart and Aortopathy (MOCHA) Program for Adolescents and Adults (Omaha, NE)
  • Cincinnati Children's Adult Congenital Heart Disease Program (CCHMC) (Cincinnati, OH)
  • COACH: Columbus Ohio Adult Congenital Heart Disease & Pulmonary Hypertension Program (Columbus, Ohio)
  • Adult Congenital Heart Disease Program at University of Washington & Seattle Children’s Hospital (Seattle, WA)

About Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center & Children's Hospital

Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center & Children's Hospital is the second largest hospital in Washington State, with 719 licensed beds, including a 161-bed Children's Hospital with more than 90 pediatric sub-specialists, a Level IV NICU, and pediatric emergency department. The Medical Center features comprehensive cardiac programs, a robotic center for minimally invasive surgery, a certified Stroke Center, inpatient psychiatric care and more. The only Level II Trauma Center in the Inland Northwest, Sacred Heart boasts many services often only found in university settings, including a heart, kidney and pancreas transplant program; a world-class research department, residency programs and more. Its service area extends to about 1.7 million people, and it is Spokane's largest private employer. Visit shmc.org for more information.

About the Adult Congenital Heart Association

Adult Congenital Heart Association (ACHA) is a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life and extending the lives of adults with congenital heart disease (CHD). ACHA serves and supports the more than one million adults with CHD, their families and the medical community—working with them to address the unmet needs of the long-term survivors of congenital heart defects through education, outreach, advocacy, and promotion of ACHD research. For more information about ACHA, call (888) 921-ACHA or visit achaheart.org.