STS Joins National ‘Care About Your Care’ Initiative

WASHINGTON, DC, Sept. 15, 2011 – Today, The Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS), in collaboration with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, will help kickoff this month’s Care About Your Care quality health care campaign. A national coalition of more than 20 leading health care organizations has joined the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to raise consumer awareness about high-quality health care. The initiative will launch with a live national telecast hosted by STS member and practicing cardiothoracic surgeon Dr. Mehmet Oz at the Newseum in Washington, DC. The event will be streamed live online at www.CareAboutYourCare.org at 12:00 p.m. ET.

The Care About Your Care website features links to nearly 100 partner resources to help health care consumers find quality care and be more engaged patients. The site includes STS resources in both English and Spanish.

Michael J. Mack, MD, president of STS, issued the following statement of support:

“The Society of Thoracic Surgeons is pleased to participate in the Care About Your Care campaign. Founded in 1964, STS is a not-for-profit organization representing more than 6,200 surgeons, researchers and allied health care professionals worldwide who are dedicated to ensuring the best possible outcomes for surgeries of the heart, lung and esophagus. STS is committed to helping cardiothoracic surgeons provide the highest-quality patient care.

We at STS believe the public has a right to know about the quality of surgical outcomes so that consumers can make informed decisions about their health care.

STS is well known for its Adult Cardiac Surgery Database, the premier clinical registry for cardiac surgery, with information from more than 4.5 million surgical records submitted by more than 94 percent of U.S. centers currently performing adult cardiac surgery. Building on those data, STS developed its star rating system that allows heart bypass patients to assess surgical centers based on overall performance, complications, survival rates and other quality measures. In collaboration with STS, Consumers Union currently publishes STS star ratings for more than 300 surgical practices on its Consumer Reports health website.

In the past decade, there has been a dramatic reduction in mortality among heart surgery patients, due largely to surgeons' willingness to track—and improve—their performance. If you are facing the possibility of heart surgery, be sure the surgical group you’re considering participates in the STS Adult Cardiac Surgery Database. Visit www.sts.org/publicreporting to learn more.”

For more information about Care About Your Care, please visit http://www.careaboutyourcare.org.

Join the conversation on YouTube and Facebook.

Founded in 1964, The Society of Thoracic Surgeons is a not-for-profit organization representing more than 6,200 surgeons, researchers, and allied health care professionals worldwide who are dedicated to ensuring the best possible outcomes for surgeries of the heart, lung, and esophagus, as well as other surgical procedures within the chest. The mission of the Society is to enhance the ability of cardiothoracic surgeons to provide the highest quality patient care through education, research, and advocacy. Learn more at www.sts.org.

Note to Editors: For more information about STS public reporting, or to arrange for an interview with Dr. Mack, contact Rachel Estrada at restrada [at] sts [dot] org or (312) 202-5865.

|||