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SEATTLE – (July 20, 2016) – Virginia Mason has received the 2016 Mission: Lifeline® Gold Achievement Award for implementing specific American Heart Association quality improvement measures for treating patients who suffer severe heart attacks.

Wayne S. Hwang, MD
Wayne S. Hwang, MD

“We are dedicated to raising the bar when it comes to high quality cardiac care for our patients who suffer a heart attack,” said Wayne S. Hwang, MD, medical director, Virginia Mason Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory, and a board member of the American Heart Association Puget Sound Chapter. “We are very much in line with the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline program, as our never-ending focus on clinical excellence translates into superior outcomes for the patients we serve. Our participation in Mission: Lifeline and recognition for heart attack care reflects our team’s commitment to quality care.”

Every year, more than 250,000 people experience an ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) — the term cardiologists use to describe a classic heart attack. STEMI requires timely treatment. To prevent death, it’s critical to restore blood flow as quickly as possible either by mechanically opening the blocked vessel or providing clot-busting medication.

Virginia Mason earned the Gold Achievement Award for having an 85 percent composite adherence and at least 24 consecutive months of 75 percent or higher compliance on all Mission: Lifeline STEMI Receiving Center quality measures.

“Our greatest reward is caring for our patients,” said Anne Casey, director, Virginia Mason Heart Institute. “That’s why we are committed to closing the gaps that separate patients from timely access to appropriate treatments.

“We commend Virginia Mason for this achievement award, which reflects a significant institutional commitment to the highest quality of care for their heart attack patients,” said James G. Jollis, MD, chair, Mission: Lifeline Advisory Working Group. “Achieving this award means the hospital has met specific reporting and achievement measures for the treatment of their patients who suffer heart attacks and we applaud them for their commitment to quality and timely care.”

About Virginia Mason Health System Virginia Mason, founded in 1920, is a nonprofit regional health care system based in Seattle that serves the Pacific Northwest. In the Puget Sound region, the system includes 336-bed Virginia Mason Hospital; a primary and specialty care group practice of more than 500 physicians; regional medical centers in Seattle, Bainbridge Island, Bellevue, Federal Way, Kirkland, Issaquah and Lynnwood; Bailey-Boushay House, the first skilled-nursing and outpatient chronic care management program in the U.S. designed and built specifically to meet the needs of people with HIV/AIDS; Benaroya Research Institute, which is internationally recognized for autoimmune disease research; and Virginia Mason Institute, which trains health care professionals and others from around the world in the Virginia Mason Production System, an innovative management methodology for continually improving quality, safety and efficiency. Virginia Mason online:

Virginia Mason Health System also includes Yakima-based Memorial Family of Services and Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital, a 226-bed facility serving the Yakima Valley in Central Washington since 1950. Memorial Family of Services comprises primary care practices and specialty care services, including high quality cardiac care, a continuum of cancer care, hospice care, and advanced services for children with special health care needs. Memorial online:

Media Contact:
Gale Robinette
Media Relations Manager
Virginia Mason Health System
(206) 341-1509



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