News Center

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Franciscan St. Francis Health is first in Indiana to earn carotid artery stenting accreditation

INDIANAPOLIS – Franciscan St. Francis Health announced today that it has been fully accredited for carotid artery stenting by the Accreditation for Cardiovascular Excellence (ACE), becoming the only hospital in Indiana and the second in the world to earn this distinction.
The accreditation means that Franciscan St. Francis health is dedicated to upholding the highest standards of quality care, maintaining best practices as recommended by nationally accepted practice guidelines and meeting nationally accepted gold standards.
ACE reviewed five areas of the Franciscan St. Francis program including its facility, personnel, quality assurance, patient indications and patient outcomes. In total, the program was assessed on 65 standards.
“Advancing quality standards is of utmost importance in our field to maintain excellence of care in cardiovascular procedures for the patients we serve throughout Indiana,” said William Berg, MD, medical director and interventional cardiologist at Franciscan St. Francis Heart Center. “By seeking ACE Carotid Artery Stenting accreditation, Franciscan St. Francis Health has shown that it has an uncompromising commitment to provide safe, high-quality care.”
ACE is a nationally renowned independent organization sponsored by the Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions and the American College of Cardiology, two leading professional cardiovascular organizations. Implemented to supplement existing quality improvement programs, the ACE Carotid Artery Stenting accreditation promotes uniform benchmarks and improves appropriate utilization via an independent, third-party evaluation of facilities and practices.
Carotid artery stenting treats carotid artery stenosis, a condition that occurs when the main arteries in the neck supplying blood to the brain become narrowed. Over time, fatty deposits and plaque can severely narrow or completely block flow to the brain, resulting in a stroke – the third cause of death and disability in the United States.
Risk factors for carotid artery disease include:

Current or former smoker
        Abnormal cholesterol, including high total cholesterol or low HDL (<40mg dl="" o:p="">
        Family history of stroke, aneurysm or circulation disorders
        High blood pressure or are being treated for high blood pressure
Vascular patients at Franciscan St. Francis are treated by a multidisciplinary team of physicians and medical staff including expert vascular surgeons, interventional and non-invasive cardiologists and interventional radiologists.
“Our interventional cardiologists have extensive experience in performing minimally invasive interventions, such as stenting, with utmost safety and state of the art technology to treat carotid artery disease and prevent strokes,” Charles Kiell, MD, medical director of Vascular Services at Franciscan St. Francis Health. “These procedures allow patients to experience a faster recovery and less time in the hospital.”

Franciscan St. Francis Heart Center has one of the region’s most robust and comprehensive heart and vascular programs to treat the most complex cardiovascular conditions and has amassed numerous awards and accreditations for its services. More information on the Franciscan St. Francis Heart Center awards and its Vascular Screening Program is available at