Olean General Hospital Celebrating Advances in Heart Care With 500 People Forming A People Heart Picture

Nearly 500 employees, physicians, volunteers of Olean General Hospital (OGH) as well as Emergency Medical Services, gathered to form a giant “living” heart on the front lawn of the hospital Friday afternoon. “It’s all part of a celebration of accreditation of the hospital’s Chest Pain Center and the launch next month of OGH’s interventional cardiac catheterization program in partnership with Kaleida Health,” said Timothy J. Finan, president and CEO of Olean General Hospital and Upper Allegheny Health System.

“The Heart Program at Olean General Hospital, as we are now calling it, addresses a huge community health need. This region suffers from one of the highest rates of cardiac disease and cardiac-related mortality in the state. Our Heart Program will save lives,” Finan said.

Olean General Hospital is only the ninth hospital in New York State and the only hospital in Southwestern New York to earn Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care accreditation. The SCPC accreditation recognizes that Olean General Hospital has achieved a higher level of expertise in dealing with patients who arrive with symptoms of a heart attack. The accreditation also means that OGH meets the Society’s expectations in demonstrating the importance of standardized diagnostic and treatment programs that provide more efficient and effective evaluation, appropriate and rapid treatment of patients with chest pain and other heart attack symptoms. In addition, accreditation recognizes the hospital for promoting a healthier lifestyle in an attempt to reduce the risk factors for heart attack.

“The entire OGH team has worked tirelessly to bring our Chest Pain Center to a level of care unmatched in our region, focusing on training, education and processes that ensure the patients coming to our Emergency Department will receive fast, accurate diagnosis for chest pain in line with the highest standards in the nation,” Finan said.

“This is a wonderful tribute to OGH leadership, physicians and staff who set their sights on SPCP accreditation when we opened the Chest Pain Center four years ago and have worked tirelessly since to continually improve the standard of care,” said Dr. Ahmad Hilal, cardiologist and medical director of the Chest Pain Center at OGH.

In October heart care in Olean and the surrounding region will take another significant leap forward when Olean General Hospital opens its new state-of-the-art interventional cardiac catheterization laboratory in partnership Kaleida Health’s Gates Vascular Institute in Buffalo.

“With the opening of the new lab, patients in the region will have access to cardiac catheterization procedures and interventions to quickly treat coronary artery disease, significantly reducing both time and distance for residents to travel to receive life-saving heart care,” Finan said. “OGH will be the only hospital in Southwestern New York to have this capability.”

Patients utilizing the new lab will be under the care of two interventional cardiologists, Dr. Gary Maur, director of the program and Dr. Christopher Mallavarapu. Both experienced board certified interventional cardiologists were recently recruited to Olean by OGH and Kaleida Health and will provide 24/7 coverage for the lab.

Kaleida Health relocated a complete cardiac catheterization laboratory to OGH from the Gates Vascular Institute in Buffalo. OGH nurses and technicians who will staff the new lab have spent months training at the Gates Vascular Institute.

“I believe this is the most significant patient care advancement in Southwestern New York State in a generation,” Finan said. “The new laboratory will save patients the time and anxiety and time of having to travel long distances for cardiac catheterization procedures.”

“Bringing these services to Olean will mean patients will have access to care formerly available only in larger cities like Buffalo, Rochester, Pittsburgh and Erie. We are excited to partner with Kaleida Health, Western New York’s largest provider of cardiac services, to bring a better quality of life to our region,” Finan said.

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