Article Content

The Joint Commission, in collaboration with the American Heart Association, has announced a new Disease-Specific Care Advanced Certification Program in Heart Failure. This certificate of distinction recognizes hospitals that are making exceptional efforts to foster better quality of care and outcomes for heart failure patients.


The Joint Commission's new advanced certification program requires organizations to meet the following criteria:


* Meet the standards and performance measurement requirements under The Joint Commission's Disease-Specific Care Certification program


* Achieve and sustain for 90 days or more at least 85% compliance with the five achievement measures of Get With the Guidelines-Heart Failure, the American Heart Association's hospital-based quality improvement program designed to close the treatment gap in cardiovascular disease


* Collect data on Joint Commission core measures for heart failure, and use these data in ongoing performance improvement activities



Through the use of the standards and quality improvement tools, the advanced certification program promotes successful efforts in heart failure management, which include a standard method of delivering or coordinating care; implementation of evidence-based clinical practice guidelines; a secure and timely system for sharing information across settings and providers that safeguards patient rights and privacy; a comprehensive performance improvement program that uses outcomes data to continually enhance existing treatment plans and clinical practices; and clinical practices that support patient self-management.


"The Joint Commission's certificate recognizes organizations that are focused on the best outcomes for heart failure patients," says Jean Range, MS, RN, CPHQ, executive director of Disease-Specific Care Certification, The Joint Commission. "Achievement of certification signifies that the services at these organizations have the critical elements to achieve long-term success in improving outcomes. This certification demonstrates to the community that the care provided is effectively managed to meet the unique and specialized needs of heart-failure patients."


For more information about the advanced heart failure certification program, please call 630.792.5291 or e-mail Jean Range at [email protected].