Penn State Intercom......October 31, 2002

Hershey Medical Center
one of top heart hospitals

According to a new national study by an independent health-care industry analyst, Penn State Cardiovascular Center is one of the nation's best resources for heart patients.

The study, "The 100 Top Hospitals: Cardiovascular Benchmarks for Success," identifies the nations' top cardiovascular facilities and includes Milton S. Hershey Medical Center's comprehensive cardiovascular program. Solucient, a health-care industry analyst that provides hospitals, health-care providers, insurance companies, employers, consultants and pharmaceutical companies with relevant strategic intelligence, produced the study.

Solucient's 100 top benchmark cardiovascular hospitals showed higher procedure volumes than their peers; median complication rates were lower; and average survival rates were markedly higher, particularly for patients with congestive heart failure and patients undergoing angioplasty or bypass surgery.

The hospitals also demonstrated lower costs and shorter lengths of stay for coronary artery bypass graft procedures performed both "off pump" (without a heart-lung machine during surgery) and "on pump" than did peer hospitals.

Penn State Cardiovascular Center was one of only seven Pennsylvania hospitals to make the list. The selection to the 100 Top Hospitals list is the latest in series of positive events for the center. In February, the medical center dedicated the I.O. Silver Cardiovascular Specialties Clinic. The clinic combines outpatient services for cardiology and cardiothoracic surgery into one setting for heart patients.