ARH and UK HealthCare Join Forces to Enhance Cardiology Services in Eastern Kentucky

9/9/2013

Appalachian Regional Healthcare (ARH), Appalachian Heart Center (AHC), and UK HealthCare’s Gill Heart Institute have announced they will join forces to deliver the highest quality and state-of-the-art cardiovascular care to residents of Eastern Kentucky.

This collaboration will improve access to patient-centered care and create an extension of the Gill Heart Institute into the region. It also provides patients access to UK's comprehensive cardiovascular expertise and resources while maintaining the familiarity of community health care providers. Dr. VidyaYalamanchi, Dr. RaoPodapati and Dr. Srini R. Appakondu from the Appalachian Heart Center, longstanding icons for cardiovascular care in the region, will team up with the Gill Heart Institute for advanced treatment options not readily available in the local area. The physicians will also become UK College of Medicine faculty members.

The AHC cardiologists will join the Gill Heart Institute team providing services in Hazard including UK's specialty cardiologists who are currently seeing patients in the area as well as Dr. Edward Setser, UK cardiothoracic surgeon who began performing cardiothoracic procedures including coronary revascularization and heart valve replacements in Hazard in 2011. “We look forward to the opportunity to work closely with the physicians and health care providers at Gill Heart Institute to enhance cardiology services to patients in Eastern Kentucky," said Yalamanchi. "This partnership is an example of teamwork that emphasizes a commitment to providing exemplary patient care.”

"I look forward to welcoming Drs. Yalamanchi, Podapati and Appakondu to our UK team here in Hazard," added Setser. "Their expertise and their dedication to the people of this area will enable us to provide a new level of services and care to cardiology patients in Eastern Kentucky."

In addition, UK HealthCare and ARH have agreed to jointly administer and manage cardiovascular services at Hazard ARH and five other ARH hospital locations throughout Eastern Kentucky.

"The goal of this collaboration is to expand the scope of cardiology services provided within our community," said Joe Grossman, president and CEO of the Appalachian Regional Healthcare. "By providing a range of comprehensive cardiology services, including inpatient and outpatient services to residents of Eastern Kentucky, we hope to improve lives in a region where patients suffer from some of the highest rates of mortality in the nation from heart disease and stroke."

The agreement includes the Hazard ARH Regional Medical Center, Harlan ARH Hospital, Whitesburg ARH Hospital, McDowell ARH Hospital, Mary Breckinridge ARH Hospital, and Williamson ARH Hospital. In addition, the Appalachian Heart Center has clinics in Hazard, Harlan, Hyden, and Cumberland.

“This alliance further expands the UK HealthCare mission to improve access to quality health care delivery for all Kentuckians in a cost effective and responsible manner,” said Dr. Michael Karpf, UK executive vice president of health affairs. "But the real benefit for many patients and their loved ones will be the ability to stay close to home for complex cardiology care."

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