RWJUH Ventricular Assist Device Program awarded disease-specific care certification

Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital has earned the Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval for Ventricular Assist Device Program recertification by demonstrating continuous compliance with its performance standards.

The recertification recognizes health care organizations that provide clinical programs across the continuum of care for Ventricular Assist Device support for patients with end-stage heart failure. The certification evaluates how organizations use clinical outcomes and performance measures to identify opportunities to improve care, as well as to educate and prepare patients and their caregivers for discharge.

The VAD Program is part of RWJUH’s Advanced Heart Failure, VAD and Transplant Program, which offers the full spectrum of care for the end-stage heart failure patients, including left ventricular assist devices, access to clinical trials and Medicare-certified heart transplant services.

RWJUH has dedicated a multidisciplinary team of physicians, coordinators, nurse practitioners, a social worker and a nutritionist solely for the program.

“This prestigious certification affirms RWJUH’s role as a leader in VAD technology,” Dr. Hirohisa Ikegami, surgical director of RWJUH’s Advanced Heart Failure, VAD and Transplant Program, said. “We are committed to providing patients diagnosed with end-stage heart failure this advanced, life-saving technology as a bridge to transplant, as a therapeutic option for heart recovery, or as a permanent therapy for individuals who are not eligible for transplant.”

RWJUH CEO Bill Arnold added: “As a leading academic medical center, we are proud to offer residents of our state and region advanced therapies, such as VADs and transplants. Earning this certification is testament to the hard work and commitment to excellence demonstrated by our team of surgeons, physicians, nurses, social workers, nutritionists and coordinators who work together to provide hope for our patients.”

“Disease-Specific Care VAD Program recertification recognizes health care organizations committed to fostering continuous improvement in patient safety and quality of care,” Deborah Ryan, interim executive vice president, accreditation and certification operations, the Joint Commission, stated. “We commend Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital for using recertification to reduce variation in its clinical processes and to strengthen its program structure and management framework for (chronic disease or condition) patients.”