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GHS Medical Center Echocardiography Lab reaccredited

Augusta, GA

The Intersocietal Accreditation Commission recently reaccredited the Adult Echocardiography Lab at Georgia Health Sciences Medical Center for another three-year term for demonstrating quality in Adult Transthoracic, Stress and Transesophageal Echocardiography.

The GHS Adult Echo Lab is one of only two in Georgia IAC-accredited in all three diagnostic areas and one of three in the state IAC-accredited in Adult Transesophageal Echo.

“We are pleased to be recognized for echocardiography excellence. IAC accreditation is evidence that the diagnostic services our Adult Echo Lab performs meet the national standards for image acquisition and interpretation,” said Dr. Gyanendra Sharma, Medical Director of the Cardiovascular Center and Interim Medical Director of the Adult Echo Lab.

Senior Medical Echocardiographer Mary Pidel performs a transthoracic echocardiogram at Georgia Health Sciences Medical Center. 

In echocardiography, high-frequency sound waves are used to detect cardiac structure and flow patterns that may indicate cardiovascular disorders and heart disease, the leading cause of death in the United States. An estimated 10 million echocardiograms are performed annually in the nation.

The transthoracic echocardiogram, the most common type, views the heart by moving a transducer to different locations on the chest or abdominal wall. A stress echo is performed before and after the heart is stressed either by exercise or by medicine injection. During a transesophageal echo, a probe is passed down the esophagus, which often produces the clearest pictures of the heart, because the sound waves of the probe are not blocked by the lungs and bones of the chest wall.

IAC accreditation is a seal of approval for patients that a facility has been carefully critiqued on all aspects of its operations considered relevant by echocardiography experts. For a list of accredited health care facilities, visit www.intersocietal.org. Echocardiography accreditation is required in many states by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and by some private insurers.

The 478-bed Georgia Health Sciences Medical Center is operated by the Georgia Health Sciences Health System, a not-for-profit corporation that manages the clinical operations of Georgia Health Sciences University. The health system also includes a Critical Care Center, housing the region’s only Level I trauma center ; the 154-bed Children’s Medical Center, providing the highest level of pediatric critical care and neonatal intensive care; and more than 80 outpatient clinics that provide primary and specialty care inside the Medical Office Building.


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