Southside Regional Medical Center Application to Introduce Open Heart Surgery Services
Public Hearing Information
Click here to view the Community Letter
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Click here to view the DCOPN Staff Report - COPN Request No. VA-7897
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COPN Request NO. VA-7897 History
2008: SRMC applied to the Virginia State Health Commissioner for a Certificate of Need (COPN) to establish an open heart surgery program with two cardiac ORs. The application was recommended for approval by the Central Virginia Health Planning Agency, the Division of Certificate of Need staff and the Commissioner’s own Adjudication Officer.
June 2009: for the first time in the history of the COPN program, the Commissioner denied a project with unanimous approvals from all reviewing agencies.
2012: SRMC filed a second application and has addressed the Commissioner’s concerns. SRMC proposes to have one operating room dedicated specifically to open heart surgery in order to serve patients in its cardiac service area, enabling them to remain closer to home for this life saving treatment.
SRMC is a regional referral hospital with 300 beds in the most populated area of Health Planning District 19.
SRMC already has a successful and highly regarded cardiac catheterization program (with two labs) that is growing at an average rate of 16% per year. SRMC’s cardiac catheterization program has been nationally recognized for its high quality of care.
Population growth is likely to continue. The over-55 population in SRMC’s service area continues to grow at a healthy rate, and the over-65 population is expected to increase by 19.67% between 2010 and 2015.
SRMC’s cardiac service area includes Prince George, Sussex, Surry, Southampton, Greensville, Dinwiddie, Nottoway, Mecklenburg, and Brunswick counties, as well as the cities of Petersburg, Colonial Heights, Hopewell, Emporia, and Franklin, and the towns of Lawrenceville, South Hill, Blackstone, Courtland, Waverly and Wakefield.
Many of the patients living in SRMC’s cardiac service area must travel distances up to 60 minutes, and some as much as 80 to 90 minutes, to access open heart surgery. Families also face long travel times and added expense to provide needed support to their loved ones.
Nearly half of all open heart surgery procedures are emergent or urgent. Travel time is critical. In 2010, approximately 229 patients traveled from SRMC’s cardiac service area to Richmond for open heart surgery services.
SRMC conservatively projects that it will perform 228 open heart surgeries by 2015, or by the second year of operation, which studies have shown will promote quality.
All Richmond area open heart facilities are operating at acceptable volume levels, and many of the facilities have seen their number of open heart surgery procedures increase since 2008.
SRMC’s planning district has no open heart surgery providers. This is simply unacceptable and is not consistent with state planning guidelines.
Without open heart services, the scope of SRMC’s cardiac services will be unfairly limited.