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Olean General Hospital

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New Cardiac Care Technology Aims to Reduce Waiting Time at Olean General Hospital

Posted on: 07/09/2012

Olean General Hospital has introduced new technology which greatly reduces processing time for critical cardiac blood tests in its Emergency Department and Chest Pain Center. The Abbott i-STAT System provides test results at the patient’s bedside in minutes, accelerating the diagnosis of those experiencing chest pain and other symptoms of heart attack.

The system saves precious time for patients arriving at the hospital’s Emergency Department with heart attack symptoms, where determinations must be made quickly as to whether or not the patient is having a heart attack (myocardial infarction). The system measures cardiac troponin blood levels, key indicators used in the diagnosis of heart attack. The i-STAT System can reduce test processing time from more than an hour to as little as 12 minutes.

“We are proud to be the first hospital in southwestern New York State to have this technology,” said Timothy J. Finan, president and CEO of Olean General Hospital.

“Our goal is to significantly reduce time-to-diagnosis and treatment, improve safety and minimize patient anxiety. In the case of a heart attack, time is muscle and this test allows for a significantly faster and quicker diagnosis; it’s a tremendous quality enhancement.

The i-STAT System uses a wireless hand-held device resembling a large cellular phone which analyzes blood sample cartridges. Within minutes after reading the samples, the unit displays the test results.

“Waiting for results of critical lab tests can be a stressful experience for patients with chest pain and frustrating for physicians and nurses who need these results before making decisions regarding diagnosis and treatment,” said Dr. Brian Walters, Director of Emergency Services at Upper Allegheny Health System.

“This technology is a win/win for patients and clinicians. By getting lab results quickly at the bedside doctors can make the necessary decisions for treatment much faster,” Dr. Walters said.

By reducing time patients spend in the Chest Pain Center, the hospital can also reduce congestion during busy periods and speed up admission to the hospital for those requiring hospitalization or discharge for those going home.

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