Program Overview (AHF)

Advanced Heart Failure

One of the Midwest’s busiest and most experienced programs for congestive heart failure (CHF). Much of our success can be attributed to our multidisciplinary approach to patient care and treatment. We combine the expertise of cardiologists, nurses, nurse practitioners, care coordinators, pharmacists, social workers and many other professionals – and work closely with surgeons when surgery is the best option for our patients. St.Vincent’s has a dedicated inpatient unit and a reputation for excellent follow-up care after discharge, and providing patients outstanding cardiac care through evidence-based therapies. In 2011, our composite scores for assessment of left ventricular function, use of ACEI / ARB, smoking cessation advice / counseling and discharge instruction were 97%.

Our CHF program is a leader not only in treatment, but also in modeling success for our peers. We have been Five-Star rated by HealthGrades for the treatment of heart failure for seven years in a row (2006-2012). In 2009, St.Vincent Hospital became the first health institution in the state to earn the Disease-Specific Care Certification for Heart Failure from The Joint Commission, the nation’s leading healthcare accreditation organization. Dr. Mary Norine Walsh, AHFTC Program Director, has been a leader in system-wide Ascension Health initiatives for clinical excellence, sharing best practices at St.Vincent Hospital and with her colleagues across the nation.

Heart Transplantation and Ventricular Assist Devices (VADs)

St.Vincent Heart Center of Indiana remains the largest and most active cardiac transplant program in the state of Indiana. In 2011, we performed 24 heart transplants and 64 ventricular assist device (VAD) procedures, both increases over 2010.

In February 2012, St.Vincent celebrated the 25th anniversary of our first heart transplant, performed by Dr. John Paris. Today, as the largest heart transplant program in the state, we are helping more patients with cardiomyopathy, congenital heart defects, heart valve disease, debilitating arrhythmia and other heart conditions live more active, fulfilling lives.