When it comes to matters of the heart and advanced stroke care, thousands of area residents will now have access to Overland Park Regional Medical Center’s unique multi-specialty Heart and Vascular/Neuroscience Lab, which features advanced technology and a team of multi-specialty physicians. The hospital, part of HCA Midwest Health System, Kansas City’s largest healthcare network, announces the opening of the cath lab, which offers numerous options for diagnosis and treatment of cardiac disease and advanced interventional stroke care.

The public open house for the Heart and Vascular/Neuroscience Lab is scheduled from 4:30 – 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2011, at Overland Park Regional Medical Center. A chamber of commerce ribbon cutting is scheduled for 5 p.m., with remarks by Overland Park Regional Medical Center Chief Executive Officer Damond Boatwright immediately following. The lab is located on the campus of Overland Park Regional Medical Center, on the first floor of the hospital between the Emergency Department and the Operating Room. News media is welcome for interviews and tours of the new facility beginning at 4 p.m.

Overland Park Regional Medical Center is an accredited chest pain and stroke center and was recently recognized by The Joint Commission, the nation’s leading accreditor for healthcare organizations, for achieving quality thresholds in every key quality measure for which it provides care, including heart attack and heart failure. The Heart and Vascular/Neuroscience Lab enhances the services already offered by the hospital, bringing heart and stroke care to a new level.

Boatwright says the opening of the Heart and Vascular/Neuroscience Lab marks a new era for heart and stroke patients in the area. “Overland Park Regional Medical Center maintains certification as a chest pain center because delivering the most appropriate and timely care for heart attack patients is a top priority,” says Boatwright. “This expansion of our cardiovascular services will help us better serve the needs of our patients, our treating physicians and staff.”

The Heart and Vascular/Neuroscience Lab is dedicated to heart rhythm management, and will have the capability for more complex procedures that previously were performed in a separate area. In addition, the lab features a new-generation machine, one of only two in Kansas City, which allows physicians to view three-dimensional images of the heart with increased accuracy and efficiency. Finally, the lab will offer interventional stroke care, providing clot retrieval and intra-arterial tPA, a drug that when administered within three hours of having a stroke can help break up blood clots.

Katherine Bailey, RN, director of cardiovascular services at Overland Park Regional Medical Center, says the Heart and Vascular/Neuroscience Lab is a significant addition to the acclaimed heart and stroke services offered by the hospital. “Our scope has increased to accommodate minimally invasive procedures,” says Bailey. “Vascular surgeons now have the capability to perform these procedures in a lab setting, with the most advanced technology available to view a patient’s images. We can also deliver tPA through a catheter, directly to the point of a stroke, for those patients who don’t respond to IV treatment of the drug.”

Electrophysiologists, interventional radiologists, vascular surgeons and general surgeons will treat patients at the Heart and Vascular/Neuroscience Lab at Overland Park Regional Medical Center.

“We are very excited about the expansion of electrophysiology services at OPRMC with the creation of the Heart and Vascular/Neuroscience Lab,” says Peter H. Park, MD, FACC, FHRS. “This technologically advanced lab allows us to perform complex cardiac procedures safely and effectively. We are proud to deliver the best in cardiac care in this advanced facility to all residents of the greater Kansas City area.”

Boatwright acknowledges the emergency response agencies that partner with Overland Park Regional Medical Center every day to care for patients who urgently need the hospital’s heart and stroke services. “Without the dedication of area EMS staff, our cath lab expansion would not have the same quality impact for patients,” says Boatwright.