Knight Cardiovascular Institute first in Pacific Northwest to receive Heart Failure Certification

Heart failure program celebrates American Heart Month with highest honor for patient care standards

PORTLAND, Ore. – The OHSU Knight Cardiovascular Institute today announced that, just in time for American Heart Month, it's heart failure program has earned The Joint Commission's Gold Seal of Approval® and the American Heart Association's Heart-Check mark for Advanced Certification in Heart Failure. The Gold Seal of Approval® and the Heart-Check mark represent symbols of quality from their respective organizations. OHSU is the first hospital in the Pacific Northwest to receive advanced certification in heart failure.

OHSU recently underwent a rigorous on-site review. Joint Commission experts evaluated compliance with disease-specific care standards and heart failure-specific requirements. The certification recognizes heart failure programs that include either a hospital-based and hospital-owned outpatient heart failure clinic or have a collaborative relationship with one or more attending cardiology practices.

"OHSU is pleased to receive advanced certification from The Joint Commission and the American Heart Association,” said James Mudd, M.D., director of the heart failure and heart transplant program at the OHSU Knight Cardiovascular Institute and assistant professor of medicine (cardiovascular medicine) in the OHSU School of Medicine. "This award not only reflects the exceptional heart failure care we provide to our patients but our commitment to improve our systems of care with innovation and research to combat this disease.”

The Joint Commission's Advanced Certification in Heart Failure was developed in collaboration with an external task force of experts and organizations with expertise in heart failure care, including representatives from the American Heart AssociationHeart Failure Society of America and the American Association of Heart Failure Nurses.

To be eligible for Advanced Certification in Heart Failure, health care providers must have achieved at least a Bronze level of performance from the American Heart Association's Get With The Guidelines-Heart Failure program and established a comprehensive heart failure-focused program staffed by qualified medical professionals. OHSU currently has a Silver-Plus level of performance. To achieve this performance recognition, OHSU was also required to demonstrate that the program is using the latest scientific research developed to meet individualized patient needs.

More than 5 million Americans suffer from heart failure, a chronic, progressive disease in which the heart cannot effectively pump blood to the rest of the body, according to the American Heart Association. Although the heart keeps working, it's not as effective as it should be. Each year, about 825,000 new cases are diagnosed and more than 275,000 will die of heart failure. However, many patients can lead a full, active life through a combination of medication and lifestyle changes.

About The Joint Commission

Founded in 1951, The Joint Commission seeks to continuously improve health care for the public, in collaboration with other stakeholders, by evaluating health care organizations and inspiring them to excel in providing safe and effective care of the highest quality and value. The Joint Commission accredits and certifies more than 20,500 health care organizations and programs in the United States, including hospitals and health care organizations that provide ambulatory and office-based surgery, behavioral health, home care, laboratory and nursing home services. An independent, not-for-profit organization, The Joint Commission is the nation's oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in health care. The Joint Commission has two nonprofit affiliate organizations: The Joint Commission Center for Transforming Healthcare aims to solve health care's most critical safety and quality problems and Joint Commission Resources (JCR) provides consulting services, educational services and publications. Joint Commission International, a division of JCR, accredits and certifies international health care organizations. Learn more about The Joint Commission at

About the OHSU Knight Cardiovascular Institute

The OHSU Knight Cardiovascular Institute is an integrated center of translational research, clinical care, education and disease prevention. The institute is dedicated to becoming the world's best at translating research into clinical innovations that benefit patients by attacking heart disease from every angle, before conception and throughout a person's lifetime. The OHSU Knight Cardiovascular Institute was established through a visionary $125 million philanthropic investment from Nike co-founder and chairman Phil Knight and his wife, Penny. It is the largest gift ever recorded to advance cardiovascular health in the United States.

About OHSU

Oregon Health & Science University is the state's only public academic health and research university. As one of Oregon's largest employers with more than 14,000 employees, OHSU's size contributes to its ability to provide many services and community support not found anywhere else in the state. OHSU serves patients from every corner of Oregon and is a conduit for learning for more than 4,400 students and trainees. OHSU is the source of more than 200 community outreach programs that bring health and education services to each county in the state.

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