Ponca City Medical more equipped to treat heart attack patients

Ponca City Now - June 3, 2014 6:58 am

The Ponca City Medical Center is running with the big dogs. It became one of three Accredited Chest Pain Centers in Oklahoma. The other two are in Oklahoma City and Tulsa.

The Ponca City Medical Center started preparing for the accreditation survey about a year ago. Eric Lybarger with the Ponca City Medical Center said timing was something they concentrated on because it’s key to treating a heart attack.

“There is a new system that came out of this process that allows EMTs to transmit EKGs that they do on a patient to our ER," Lybarger said. "So, our ER doctors know more quickly if a patient is having a heart attack, that way we can be prepared when they arrive. We can have a room ready for them quicker than usual, and we can have things in place to treat a patient who is truly having a heart attack. That is not something we were doing prior to this accreditation process.”

Another change they made for the survey was ways they let people know where the emergency room is. They put all new signs in place in and outside the hospital. This way everyone knows where they are in conjunction with the ER and the best way to get there. Phones were also installed by outside doors that immediately call the hospital operator.

Lybarger said he hopes the changes made set the Ponca City Medical Center apart from others.

Another part of the survey was public education.

“Another portion of this is public education, as far as calling 911," Lybarger said. "There were many components to this. We hope people know to call 911 if they think they or a family member or friend is having a heart attack, that’s the best way to do it. It’s a process, from when you think you’re having symptoms, to when you’re on the way to the hospital, to when you are here, so it’s really full spectrum.”

It took an army to pass the survey, EMTs, ER doctors, cardiologists and emergency department physicians were all part of the process.

The Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care granted the accreditation and only 12 percent of hospitals in the U.S. have this accreditation.


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