Head of the Class
Maryland Health Care Commission singles out AAMC for distinction among seven applicant hospitals
First comes AAMC’s designation as an accredited Chest Pain Center, followed closely by the news that the Maryland Health Care Commission (MHCC) has granted an extension of AAMC’s authorization to perform emergency angioplasties on patients suffering from severe heart attacks.
The extension of the authorization is noteworthy for a couple of reasons. First, without authorization from MHCC, regulations prohibit a hospital from performing emergency angioplasties unless it is also a hospital allowed under current state law to perform open-heart surgery. Second, AAMC was the only hospital granted a two-year authorization among the seven hospitals in the metropolitan Baltimore region seeking similar extensions, and the only one among the group to achieve it without restrictive conditions.
AAMC’s re-authorization is especially welcome news for communities in the region served by the hospital, according to MARCO MEJIA, M.D., an interventional cardiologist and medical director of AAMC’s Cardiac Catheterization Lab. “Primary or emergency angioplasty is a proven lifesaver in cases of severe arterial blockage,” he said. “People in the community should be reassured by the availability of advanced cardiac care here at AAMC in first critical hours of a severe heart attack.”
Interventional cardiologists with Dr. Mejia whose presence allows AAMC’s round-the-clock emergency angioplasty capability are Jonathan A. Altschulur, M.D., and Hector K. Collison, M.D.
“MHCC’s findings are an endorsement of the commitment that exists along the length and breadth of the program,” said Karen Doyle, executive director, Women’s and Surgical Services. “From the medical leadership to administrators to the staff throughout the departments, time, talent, hard work and professionalism have all led to this benchmark of excellence for cardiac care in this region.”