Texas Children's Heart Center boasts outcomes among the best in the nation, caring for more than 23,000 children with congenital heart defects annually

HOUSTON - (Sept. 17, 2015) - Texas Children's Hospital is committed to helping patients, families and providers make better health care decisions using outcomes data. To highlight this dedication, Texas Children's Heart Center recently released the annual Heart Center Outcomes booklet which provides an overview of the cardiovascular program, contains important data about clinical outcomes and highlights the innovative research taking place at Texas Children's and Baylor College of Medicine. Texas Children's Heart Center is ranked #2 nationally in cardiology and heart surgery by U.S. News World Report. To view the most recent Heart Center Outcomes book visit texaschildrens.org/heartoutcomes.

For more than 50 years, Texas Children's Heart Center has been a pioneering leader in pediatric cardiac care. The Heart Center had more than 23,000 patient encounters and performed more than 900 surgeries in 2014. Texas Children's Heart Center strives to provide every procedure available for patients with pediatric and congenital heart disease. Through innovations in research and ongoing commitment to improving all aspects of patient care, specialists aim for the very best possible treatment for patients with cardiac disease.

The Heart Center team, led by Dr. Charles D. Fraser Jr., surgeon-in-chief and chief of congenital heart surgery at Texas Children's and professor of surgery and pediatrics at Baylor, Dr. Daniel Penny, chief of cardiology at Texas Children's and professor of pediatrics-cardiology at Baylor, Dr. Emad Mossad, director of pediatric cardiovascular anesthesiology at Texas Children's and professor of anesthesiology at Baylor, and Dr. Lara Shekerdemian, chief of critical care at Texas Children's and professor of pediatrics-critical care at Baylor, combines cutting-edge technology with compassion and a family-centered approach.

"We are transparent in sharing our patient outcomes and continuously examine them to help elevate the quality of care we provide every day," said Penny. "By doing so, we not only learn what happens to our patients, but evaluate our performance in order to find areas where we can improve."

The Heart Center's efforts are supported through Texas Children's Outcomes and Impact Service which is dedicated to patients and families through a commitment to track and improve clinical outcomes, transparency in sharing those outcomes and advocating for care to be provided where the best outcomes can be achieved.

"Since 1995, the pediatric heart surgery program has carefully tracked patient outcomes and has been committed to transparency. Information about our performance is a driver of innovation and critical to quality improvement and decision making by parents and referring physicians," Fraser said.

The strength and depth of the integrated, multidisciplinary Heart Center team is exemplified by the following:

Heart Transplants

Last year, Texas Children's Heart Center team performed 32 heart transplants, making the Heart Transplant Program the most active in the nation in 2014. The program is one of the largest and most successful pediatric programs in the country, treating some of the most complex patients. Since 1984, the hospital has performed more than 325 heart transplants. Although there are a number of reasons that lead to the need for heart transplantation in children, the most common are cardiomyopathy resulting in end-stage heart failure, and end-stage or inoperable congenital heart disease that is not suitable for medicines or conventional surgery. The Texas Children's team performs heart transplants on patients from newborn through adulthood.

Additionally, Texas Children's Heart Center is on the cutting-edge of ventricular assist device (VAD) placement, which provides circulatory support until the patient undergoes a transplant. Texas Children's offers a number of different VADs tailored to each child's size, diagnosis and needs for both short- and long-term assistance.

Interventional Cardiology

The interventional cardiology team performed more than 1,150 cardiac catheterization procedures in 2014. Of these cases, more than 98 percent were performed without major complications. Texas Children's Heart Center is the largest and most comprehensive program in the region to offer interventional cardiac catheterization for infants, children, adolescents and adults with congenital heart disease.

The Arrhythmia and Pacing Service at Texas Children's Heart Center offers advanced diagnostic and therapeutic options to evaluate and manage heart rhythm abnormalities. In 2014, the team's supraventricular tachycardia ablation success rate was 98.3 percent, well above the national benchmark of 95.2 percent.
Texas Children's is the only freestanding children's hospital in the U.S. with a remote magnetic navigation (MN) system called stereotaxis for catheter manipulation. Stereotaxis has been utilized for 63 ablation cases over the last three years.

Cardiac Developmental Outcomes Program

Launched in 2013, the Cardiac Developmental Outcomes Program was created to provide routine neurodevelopmental assessments and referrals to babies and children with congenital heart disease who have undergone early surgery. The program focuses on medical, social and developmental health in order to help children reach their maximum potential. During the first year, the team assessed more than 100 babies and children and provided referrals to a variety of specialists included speech and language, hearing, neurology and behavioral experts.

Additional outcomes highlighted in the 2014 book include the Adult Congenital Heart Disease Program's clinic encounters, cardiovascular anesthesia cases, diagnostic testing and cardiac imaging and Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit admissions.

For more information about Texas Children's Heart Center visit texaschildrens.org/heart.

About Texas Children’s Hospital

Texas Children’s Hospital, a not-for-profit health care organization, is committed to creating a healthier future for children and women throughout the global community by leading in patient care, education and research. Consistently ranked as the best children’s hospital in Texas, and among the top in the nation, Texas Children’s has garnered widespread recognition for its expertise and breakthroughs in pediatric and women’s health. The hospital includes the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute; the Feigin Center for pediatric research; Texas Children’s Pavilion for Women, a comprehensive obstetrics/gynecology facility focusing on high-risk births; Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus, a community hospital in suburban West Houston; and Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands, a second community hospital planned to open in 2017. The organization also created the nation’s first HMO for children, has the largest pediatric primary care network in the country and a global health program that’s channeling care to children and women all over the world. Texas Children’s Hospital is affiliated with Baylor College of Medicine. For more information, go to www.texaschildrens.org. Get the latest news by visiting the online newsroom and Twitter at twitter.com/texaschildrens.