Holston Valley, Bristol Regional Earn Accolades From BlueCross BlueShield For High-Quality Cardiac Care

Two Wellmont Health System hospitals that have consistently been recognized at state and national levels for high-quality heart care have received BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee's newest accolade.

The company recently recognized Holston Valley Medical Center and Bristol Regional Medical Center with Blue Distinction Center+SM designations for their cardiac care as part of the Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care® program.

Blue Distinction Centers® are hospitals shown to deliver quality specialty care based on objective, transparent measures for patient safety and health outcomes. The Blue Distinction Center+ level for cardiac care was developed this year to recognize hospitals that deliver both quality and cost-efficient specialty care.

"It is gratifying to be recognized by BlueCross BlueShield for the outstanding care our physicians, nurses and other caregivers deliver every day," said Virginia Frank, Holston Valley's president. "Their skill, dedication and compassion have made Holston Valley an excellent facility for our community's cardiac patients."

Greg Neal, Bristol Regional's interim president, said he is proud of the cardiac care team for attaining this honor.

"Bristol Regional's staff and physicians stay at the forefront of cardiac care, and it's a credit to them that we have been recognized by BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee for our innovative, high-quality care," Neal said. "We are particularly honored to be one of the first hospitals to receive this honor, which reinforces for patients that high-quality cardiac care is available close to home."

Since 2006, consumers, providers and employers have relied on the Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care program to identify hospitals that deliver quality care. The program's goal is to help consumers find quality specialty care consistently, while enabling and encouraging healthcare professionals to improve the overall quality and delivery of care nationwide.

"It is important to BlueCross for our members to have a choice of healthcare providers who operate efficiently while maintaining a high quality of care," said Dr. Daniel Barnett, interim chief medical officer for BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee. "Selecting a Blue Distinction facility provides patients the peace of mind to know they're receiving excellent quality."

The Blue Distinction Center+ rating comes on the heels of previous recognition from BlueCross BlueShield. Earlier this year, Holston Valley and Bristol Regional were named a Blue Distinction Center+ for Knee and Hip ReplacementSM and a Blue Distinction Center for Spine Surgery®.

The latest recognition by BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee continues a pattern of excellence by Holston Valley and Bristol Regional in cardiac care.

Holston Valley has been selected as one of the nation's top 100 hospitals for cardiac care by CareChex, a division of Comparion that evaluates hospitals on multiple components of quality. Additionally, U.S. News & World Report recently named the hospital a high performer in cardiology and cardiac surgery, while also naming it one of the top three hospitals in Tennessee.

Likewise, Bristol Regional has earned state and national attention from the American Heart Association for achievements in the Mission: Lifeline program. A key element to that recognition has been the hospital's work with area emergency medical services agencies to ensure rapid, accurate identification of heart attacks, which results in prompt treatment at the hospital.

This coordinated and precisely managed process is part of the Wellmont CVA Heart Institute's Level One Heart Attack Network. A blend of speed and safety, the network has empowered cardiologists at Holston Valley and Bristol Regional to restore blood flow in a clogged artery in less than 15 minutes from the patient's arrival at the hospital, which is considerably less time than the national benchmark of 90 minutes.

Details about the designations from BlueCross BlueShield are publicly available. For more information, please visit http://www.bcbs.com/why-bcbs/blue-distinction/or www.wellmont.org.