photoThe Children’s Heart Institute at MemorialCare Miller Children’s & Women’s Hospital Long Beach has been granted a three-year term of accreditation by the Intersocietal Accreditation Commission (IAC) in echocardiography, in the area of pediatric transthoracic. A transthoracic echocardiogram is ideal for cardiac assessments as a non-invasive and effective way to provide detailed anatomic information about the heart.

This latest accreditation demonstrates Miller Children’s & Women’s ongoing commitment to providing the highest quality of patient care. Accreditation by the IAC indicates that Miller Children’s & Women’s has undergone an intensive application and review process and is found to be in compliance with the published standards.

“Our reaccreditation by the IAC demonstrates that the Children’s Heart Institute is committed to performing quality echocardiograms and providing the best treatments for our patients,” says Saar Danon, M.D., medical director, Pediatric Cardiology and Interventional Congenital Cardiology, Children’s Heart Institute, Miller Children’s & Women’s. “Our care team offers extensive diagnostics to accurately diagnose and treat each patient.”

An echocardiogram is a non-invasive procedure used to evaluate a heart’s structure and function, and to diagnose a congenital heart defect. Each year, more than 35,000 infants in the United States are born with a congenital heart defect, making it the most common type of birth defect. It also is the most critical, as congenital heart defects cause more deaths during the first year of life than any other birth defect. Over the past few decades, however, diagnosis and treatment have improved, allowing almost all affected children to not only grow into adulthood, but to thrive.

“We have established the Children’s Heart Institute at Miller Children’s & Women’s as a congenital cardiac center that provides comprehensive care to the patient, family and community,” says Shaun Setty, M.D., The Larry and Helen Hoag Foundation Endowed Chair in Pediatric Cardiovascular Surgery and medical director, Congenital Cardiac Surgery, Miller Children’s & Women’s. “Our reaccreditation reaffirms the personalized care that is provided and tailored to meet the needs of each patient with a congenital heart defect.”

Comprised of a detailed self-evaluation followed by a thorough review by a panel of medical experts, the IAC accreditation process enables both the critical operational and technical components of the facility to be assessed, including representative case studies and corresponding final reports.

There are many factors that contribute to an accurate diagnosis based on echocardiography. The training and experience of the sonographer (ultrasound professional) performing the procedure, the type of equipment used, the quality of the interpretation of the cardiologist and the quality assessment metrics each facility measures. An IAC accreditation is a “seal of approval” that patients can rely on as an indicator of consistent quality care and a dedication to continuous improvement.

Miller Children’s & Women’s is one of only a few hospitals in Southern California to offer comprehensive congenital cardiac care to patients of all ages. The Children’s Heart Institute provides total infant, pediatric and adult heart care for patients with congenital or acquired heart disease.