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Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital opens St. Joseph Health Outpatient Diagnostic Cardiology clinic

Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital opens St. Joseph Health Outpatient Diagnostic Cardiology clinic; new venue provides for convenient, affordable cardiac testing

(Santa Rosa, CA – February 28, 2013) Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, in a partnership with eight established local cardiologists, has opened a new Outpatient Diagnostic Cardiology clinic where patients can access tests including an echocardiogram, nuclear stress test or stress echocardiogram – imaging studies used to identify, monitor and treat heart disease.

The St. Joseph Outpatient Cardiology clinic is housed in a newly remodeled garden-level suite at 500 Doyle Park Drive, inside a medical office building on Santa Rosa Memorial's campus. Cardiologists providing care here include John Hunter, MD, John Reed, MD, Patrick Devlin, MD, Tomas Vasiliauskas, MD, Emily Conway, MD, Joel Erickson, MD, Jose Ballesteros, MD, and William Bowden, MD.

Under the supervision of these cardiologists, patients at the St. Joseph Outpatient Diagnostic Cardiology clinic may undergo imaging studies which include:

  • An echocardiogram, a comprehensive, radiation-free examination of the heart using ultrasound.
  • A stress echocardiogram, during which an ultrasound is taken of the heart before and after a patient's heart is stressed either through exercise or through administering medicine to elevate the heart rate. The pictures recorded by the sonographer provide more detail than an x-ray and involve no radiation exposure.
  • A nuclear stress test evaluates how well blood is flowing into the heart muscle, both when the heart is resting, and during physical activity. It involves an injection of a small amount of radioactive tracer into a patient's veins. A specialized camera which detects the radiation is then used to photograph the heart to help doctors assess blood flow. The second part of the test involves stress, comparing how blood flow changes when a patient is on a treadmill (exercising) or when stress is stimulated with medication.

Results of these imaging tests are interpreted by a cardiologist.

Staffed by experienced imaging technologists from Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital's staff, the new clinic enables patients to get tested in a competitively priced, comfortable outpatient setting with convenient, free parking and on-site expertise of cardiologists who are long-time members of the hospital's medical staff.

"We are pleased to be able to offer patients this convenience, and to help detect and manage their heart disease in a clinic that's close to our medical offices and the hospital," Dr. Hunter said. "We have sought to create a patient-centered environment where those who are tested can benefit from the same sophisticated imaging they'd receive in the hospital, but with easier, quicker access and more affordable pricing."

The partnership between the hospital and cardiologists involves shared oversight and accountability for the quality of patients' care. It is one of several such partnerships St. Joseph has cultivated with well-respected medical specialists in the community, as health care providers increasingly work together to optimize care available in outpatient settings.

"We're proud to expand our outpatient services in cooperation with these respected cardiologists," said Todd Salnas, President of St. Joseph Health in Sonoma County. "They are members of a team that has distinguished Memorial's Heart & Vascular Institute as the region's finest, and this new service will increase patients' access to their expertise while enhancing coordination of patients' care."

The new clinic is open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. To reach St. Joseph Outpatient Diagnostic Cardiology, call (707) 547-4606.

Learn more about St. Joseph Health's cardiac services and the Norma and Evert Person Heart & Vascular Institute at Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital by visiting StJosephHealth.org.

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