Quality Designation for Cardiovascular Care Awarded to South Nassau
For Immediate Release August 28, 2013
Contact: Damian Becker, Manager of Media Relations
South Nassau Earns Quality Designation for Cardiovascular Care
Oceanside, NY – South Nassau Communities Hospital’s Center for Cardiovascular
Health has been designated an Aetna Institute of Quality (IOQ) for interventional cardiology and
rhythm disease diagnosis and treatment.
As an IOQ facility, South Nassau demonstrates excellence in care and a commitment to
continuous improvement and is recognized in Aetna’s DocFind® online provider directory. The
goal of IOQ is to assist patients in choosing facilities that provide consistently high‐quality and
To earn the Aetna IOQ designation, South Nassau had to meet or exceed a number of
strict criteria, including annual volume; availability of 24/7 emergency heart attack response
teams to perform angioplasty or other interventional heart procedures; a program to consistently
measure and report quality and clinical data that achieves best-in-class outcomes; and a wide
scope of readily available cardiac and related clinical support services.
“This designation demonstrates to the communities and patients we serve that they can
rely on us to provide them with standard-setting, leading-edge services in cardiovascular care,”
said Linda Efferen, MD, chief medical officer at South Nassau.
A recipient of the American College of Cardiology (ACC) Foundation’s National
Cardiology Data Registry (NCDR) ACTION Registry–Get With the Guidelines (GWTG) Gold
Performance Achievement Award, the Center for Cardiovascular Health treats patients with the
combination of advanced technologies and best practices and is equipped with the latest
advancements in cardiac digital imaging systems. Its echocardiography lab is accredited by the
Intersocietal Commission for Accreditation of Echocardiography.
The center performs a wide range of coronary and peripheral interventional procedures,
The center averages a “door-to-balloon-time” of approximately 62 minutes, which is 28 minutes
faster than the national standard door-to-balloon time benchmark of 90 minutes. (Door-to-
balloon time is the time in minutes measured from the time the patient walks in the door to the
point the artery in the heart is re-opened with a stent.)
Electrophysiologists at the center use advanced technologies to provide timely, accurate
diagnoses and therapies to treat a range of cardiac arrhythmias (abnormal heart rhythms).
Services include diagnostic studies, implantation and testing of pacemakers and implantable
cardioverter defibrillators, and radio-frequency catheter ablation for the treatment of potentially
fatal irregular heartbeats.
The center’s clinical and non-invasive cardiologists specialize in trans-thoracic
echocardiogram (a non-invasive, highly accurate and quick assessment of the overall health of
the heart, in which a probe is placed on the chest wall of the patient to produce images of the
heart); transesophageal echocardiogram (which uses a specialized probe containing an ultrasound
transducer at its tip that is passed into the esophagus and is used to provide clear views of areas
of the heart that would be difficult to view transthoracically); and stress echocardiogram (which
involves exercising on a treadmill or stationary bicycle while the patient is monitored by
technology using high-frequency sound waves that produces a graphic outline of the heart's
movement, valves, and chambers).
Additional cardiac imaging services offered by the center include nuclear cardiology
(which generates images of the heart at work, during exercise, and at rest) and diagnostic
peripheral vascular ultrasound (noninvasive diagnostic technique used to evaluate the health of
blood vessels) for patients with peripheral arterial disease.
South Nassau Communities Hospital is one of the region’s largest hospitals, with 435
beds, more than 1000 physicians and 3,000 employees. Located in Oceanside, NY, the hospital
is an acute-care, not-for-profit teaching hospital that provides state-of-the-art care in cardiac,
oncologic, orthopedic, bariatric, pain management, mental health and emergency services. In
addition to its extensive outpatient specialty centers, South Nassau provides emergency and
elective angioplasty and is the only hospital on Long Island with the Novalis Tx™ and Gamma
Knife® Perfexion radiosurgery technologies. South Nassau is a designated Stroke Center by the
New York State Department of Health and Comprehensive Community Cancer Center by the
American College of Surgeons and is recognized as a Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence by
the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery. For more information, visit