A $1.5 million donation from the KishHealth Foundation, part of Northwestern Medicine, will accelerate the expansion of Northwestern Medicine’s nationally-ranked heart program to the greater DeKalb region. The funds will support the purchase of advanced cardiac equipment, educational programs, and a state-of-the-art teleconferencing center at Northwestern Medicine Kishwaukee Hospital.
“This generous donation will ensure that Kishwaukee Hospital has the people, systems and programs in place that allow us to bring the highest level of academic medicine and research to patients close to where they live and work,” said Patrick M. McCarthy, MD, chief of cardiac surgery at Northwestern Memorial Hospital and executive director, Northwestern Medicine Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute.
Cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death in Illinois, is responsible for a third of all Illinois deaths according to the Illinois Department of Public Health. The Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute at Northwestern Medicine is focused on achieving outstanding clinical outcomes for patients with complex heart problems such as atrial fibrillation, high-risk aneurysms, advanced valve disease, heart failure and pulmonary arterial hypertension. Ranked seventh nationally by U.S. News & World Report, the cardiology and heart surgery program at Northwestern Memorial Hospital has been ranked first in Illinois for ten consecutive years.
“It is an exciting time for our cardiovascular program here in DeKalb County,” said Jay Anderson, president, Northwestern Medicine Kishwaukee Hospital. “This generous donation allows for the continued development of our segment of the world class Northwestern Medicine cardiovascular program.”
A key component of the expansion is a complete upgrade of the Cardiac Catheterization Lab, which is expected to be operational by the end of the year.
“The new state-of-the art cardiac catheterization equipment provides enhanced imaging and resolution which allows for safer and more complex procedures,” said Christopher Berry, MD, cardiology at Northwestern Medicine Kishwaukee Hospital. “In addition to the cath lab, the new technology and programs made possible by this donation will enhance all aspects of our cardiac and vascular services.”
Additional components supported by the $1.5 million gift include:
- Upgraded 3D Echocardiography – Upgraded 3D equipment and staff training will enable the Kishwaukee Hospital cardiac team to complete photorealistic imaging of the structure and blood flow of the heart, which is essential for evaluating valve disease.
- Advanced Teleconferencing – A dedicated, state-of-the-art teleconferencing room adjacent to the cardiology clinic will allow Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute and other physicians at Kishwaukee Hospital to more effectively and productively collaborate with leading experts within the Northwestern Medicine family. In addition, physicians will participate in care conferences, educational conferences and administrative meetings without leaving the hospital.
- Enhanced Peripheral Vascular Capabilities – The purchase of advanced non-invasive vascular testing equipment will allow Kishwaukee Hospital to offer patients convenient access to sophisticated imaging studies not previously offered in the area.
- Mechanical Circulatory Support Pumps for Critical Transfer – Cardiac assist devices will serve to stabilize patients for transfer to facilities such as Central DuPage Hospital or Northwestern Memorial Hospital for higher levels of care.
- CardioCare – This novel pilot program improving identification of patients with moderate or severe valve disease will be expanded to Kishwaukee Hospital.
- Educational Events for Patients and Clinicians – Funds will be dedicated to continuing medical education programs for Kishwaukee Hospital clinicians, as well as the development of programs for patients and the community.
“We are thrilled to support the development and growth of the Northwestern Medicine cardiovascular program at Kishwaukee Hospital,” said Gary Evans, chair, KishHealth Foundation, part of Northwestern Medicine. “With new technology, improved clinical collaboration and additional educational opportunities, Northwestern Medicine is offering world-class care close to home.”
The Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute, part of the Northwestern Medicine health system, has multiple sites of care in Chicago and the region. Northwestern Memorial Hospital currently is ranked first in the United States for heart failure survival, second in the United States for the survival of stroke and in the top 10 for the survival of heart attack, the three most dire cardiovascular health threats.
In early 2017, a $2.5 million donation by the Northwestern Memorial Foundation initiated the expansion of the Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute to the western suburbs with a hub at Northwestern Medicine Central DuPage Hospital in Winfield and clinical care services at Northwestern Medicine Delnor Hospital in Geneva.
For more information or to make an appointment with a cardiovascular specialist, visit heart.nm.org.
To learn more about Northwestern Medicine, visit http://news.nm.org/about-northwestern-medicine.html.