Judge upholds Crestwood’s elective angioplasty

Crestwood Medical Center should be allowed to continue its elective coronary angioplasty program, according to Judge Algert S. Agricola Jr.’s recommendation to the Certificate of Need (CON) Review Board.

Judge Agricola has ruled that Crestwood’s project complies with CON review standards and satisfies the cardiac services section of the Alabama State Health Plan.

“We appreciate Judge Agricola’s time and careful attention to the testimony of clinicians, experts and patients during the hearing,” Crestwood CEO Dr. Pam Hudson said.

“Our dedicated team members and cardiologists are due all the credit for the outstanding results of this program,” Hudson said. “These committed healthcare professionals came to hospital leadership in 2003 and told us, ‘We can do this (coronary angioplasty) and save people’s lives. Let us do it!'”

Filed Oct. 5, 2011, Crestwood’s request was opposed by Huntsville Hospital. Judge Agricola heard three days of witnesses at a hearing in January and reviewed more than 70 exhibits.

The judge denied Huntsville Hospital’s request to return the issue to the Statewide Health Coordinating Council for further study, Hudson said.

Providing the program has been a long, careful journey with patient safety and quality of care as top considerations, Hudson said. “This is right for our community. Patients and families deserve a choice.”

Crestwood Medical Center has provided emergency angioplasty services for the past eight years. For the past five years, Crestwood has safely performed elective angioplasty procedures in Atlantic C-PORT Trials that Johns Hopkins School of Medicine sponsors.

“Crestwood’s performance was consistent with the updated guidelines and data from the C-PORT trial, in which Crestwood is Alabama’s only participating hospital,” Hudson said.

Judge Agricola heard testimony supporting Crestwood’s request from local and independent interventional cardiologists, who requested two providers in the community, giving patients a choice when faced with angioplasty, Hudson said.

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