Patients undergoing hip and knee replacements can expect the best care once they step through Seton Harker Heights’ doors.
Seton Harker Heights recently became the first hospital in the area to earn The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval® for Advanced Certification for Total Hip and Total Knee Replacement.
The Joint Commission evaluated compliance with advanced care standards and total hip and total knee replacement requirements, including orthopedic consultation, pre-operative, intraoperative and post-surgical orthopedic surgeon follow-up care during an onsite review at Seton Harker Heights in June 2018.
“Achieving Advanced Total Hip and Total Knee Replacement Certification recognizes Seton Medical Center Harker Heights’ commitment to provide care in a safe and efficient manner for patients,” said Patrick Phelan, executive director, Hospital Business Development, The Joint Commission. “The advanced certification will help Seton Harker Heights better provide coordinated and comprehensive care to patients undergoing a total hip or total knee replacement.”
“It gives us the chance to give patients the best treatment that we can,” explained Wellstone Orthopedic Surgeon Dr. Lovria. “The certification lets patients know that we are doing everything we can to get them better, using the best practices and best possible treatments,” he shared.
In 2017, there were a total of 117 hip and knee replacement surgeries performed at Seton Harker Heights and with this certification, these numbers are projected to grow. In fact, according to a study presented at the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons' 2006 annual meeting, hip replacements are expected to increase 174% in the next 20 years and knee replacements will rise 673%.
“Having this certification is an honor, especially with our hospital being the first in our area to receive it,” stated Seton Harker Heights’ Clinical Programs Manager, Stacy Stepeda. “Through this certification, it shows that we are using the most current and evidenced-based practices to deliver exceptional care to our patients, and that we are a top provider for total hip and total knee replacement.”
So when should a patient discuss joint discomfort or joint replacement with a provider?
Nearly 70 million people in the United States have some form of arthritis or chronic joint symptoms and approximately 20.7 million adults in the United States have the most common form of arthritis, osteoarthritis, also called degenerative joint disease. Aging joints, injury and obesity are all contributing factors.
Dr. Lovria tells patients to look out for stiffness in the morning, that feeling when it gets better with walking or moving and as you get going, the pain gets better and then worse. “When your pain is getting bad enough that it is really limiting you and you are not able to do things that you want to do, or things that make you happy, then it’s time to see a doctor,” advised Dr. Lovria. One thing to note is that not all people experiencing joint pain receive surgery. Dr. Lovria said, “We focus on what’s best for the patient. Just because you come to the doctor doesn’t mean you need surgery, it means you will get care.”
If a patient and their doctor decide it is time for joint replacement surgery, Seton Harker Heights’ Active Again Total Joint Replacement Program offers an approach to accelerate your recovery and shorten your hospital stay.
Through the program, physicians will schedule a patient to attend Joint Camp. Joint Camp is offered twice a month and in the span of a few hours, focuses on giving patients more information about their joint replacement journey. Patients will meet with the following individuals: Active Again Total Joint Replacement Program Coordinator, Active Again Total Joint Replacement Camp Coordinator, Registration Personnel, Case Management, Peri-Operative Director, Physical and Occupational Therapists, Registered Dietitian, Anesthesiologist and Pre-Operative Nurse.