WMH Launches Chest Pain Center

(Honesdale, September 23, 2022)… The Chest Pain Center at Wayne Memorial Hospital, a brand new program which received temporary accreditation privileges this summer, is designed to improve the quality and efficiency of care for patients who may be experiencing a life-threatening heart attack. Anyone who comes to the hospital’s Emergency Department complaining of chest pain—pain from the neck to the umbilicus— is receiving an EKG (electrocardiogram test) within 10 minutes to begin the process of either confirming or ruling out a serious cardiac issue. It’s one of several new protocols Wayne Memorial Hospital is instituting to assure guidelines and standards are met for its new Chest Pain Center.

Cardiac disease is still the number one killer of Americans, claiming the lives of close to 700,000 people in the U.S. each year. More than seven times that many – five million Americans – visit hospitals each year with chest pain.

“Not all chest pain is cardiac, but cardiac chest pain is the most critical, and if we can help people receive the proper treatment more quickly, we will undoubtedly save lives,” said Walid Hassan, MD, MACP, FAHA, FACC, FCCP, FSCAI, interventional cardiologist and medical director of the hospital’s cardiac catheterization laboratory, the Heart & Vascular Center. The Center is provisionally accredited by the nationally–recognized Corazon, Inc, which is also the accrediting body for the Chest Pain Center.

Dr. Hassan and Bradley Serwer, MD, FACC,  added that the Chest Pain Center is also about education: helping people learn and master the warning signs of cardiac disease, seek treatment and follow lifestyle recommendations.

“Some people are at a higher risk of having a heart attack than others,” said Dr. Serwer, who is the medical director of the Chest Pain Center and of WMH’s Cardiac Rehabilitation Program. “Increased risk of having a heart attack is based on family history, lifestyle choices and the presence of chronic medical conditions such as Diabetes.  Our goal is to identify those at elevated risk and make adjustments to lower their risk so that they can live their best life.”

Statistically only about half of Emergency Department patients reporting chest pain actually have a life-threatening cardiac issue, but prompt treatment is key.

“Wayne Memorial is also set up to treat non-cardiac chest pain caused by other issues, such as heartburn, anxiety, pleurisy or asthma,” said Dr. Hassan, “but when signs point to acute coronary issues, our cardiologists are called in to consult and prescribe the next steps, which could be a stress test or echocardiogram or, if needed, a cath lab procedure.”

For more information on how you can educate yourself about heart issues, visit Home | CardioSmart – American College of Cardiology.  The site has tips on symptoms, diagnoses, caregivers and under “Find Your Heart a Home,” more about Wayne Memorial Hospital’s services.

For more information about chest pain centers and accreditation, visit Accreditation | Corazon, Inc | Evaluate. Enhance. Excel. (corazoninc.com) or the American College of Cardiology’s About Accreditation.

Photo cover:  Dr. Bradley Serwer in cath lab.


Photo below:  Dr. Walid Hassan with left, Cassidy Cohen, RT (R ) and right, Sandi Skrobiszewski, RT(R), RCIS.