Pocono Medical Center earns Blue Distinction Center+ Award for Cardiac Care


WILKES-BARRE, Pa. – The ESSA Heart and Vascular Center at Pocono Medical Center (PMC) has been named a Blue Distinction Center+® in the area of Cardiac Care as part of the Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care® program by Blue Cross of Northeastern Pennsylvania (BCNEPA).

The Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care® program is a national designation awarded by Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies to medical facilities such as PMC that have demonstrated expertise in delivering quality specialty care.

“Our mission is to provide world-class care, close to home,” said Kathleen E. Kuck, President and CEO of Pocono Health System/Pocono Medical Center. “I am proud of our entire team and recognize them for their efforts in delivering high quality care and positive patient outcomes that have once again been recognized nationally.”

To earn BCNEPA’s Blue Distinction Center+ designation, PMC was evaluated based on an objective, evidence-based selection criteria established with input from expert physicians and medical organizations.

“Our goal with the Blue Distinction Centers+ for Specialty Care® program is to identify local medical facilities that deliver higher overall quality and positive patient outcomes for a specific area of specialty care, such as cardiac care,” said Nina M. Taggart, MD, Vice President of Clinical Operations and Chief Medical Officer for BCNEPA.  “This helps our members, and all local residents, make more informed healthcare decisions.”

Research confirms that the newly designated Blue Distinction Centers+ demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients, with lower rates of complications and readmissions than their peers. Blue Distinction Centers+ also are more than 20 percent more cost-efficient.

Since 2006, consumers, medical providers and employers have relied on the Blue Distinction program to identify hospitals delivering quality care in Bariatric Surgery, Cardiac Care, Complex and Rare Cancers, Knee and Hip Replacements, Spine Surgery, and Transplants.















Pictured above with the Blue Distinction Center+® signage at Pocono Medical Center are, seated left to right: Karthik Sheka, MD, Cardiologist, PMC; Donna Iverson, Director, Quality and Regulatory Compliance, PMC; Q. Thomas Novinger, MD, MBA, FAAP, Senior Medical Director, Utilization Management, BCNEPA. Standing, left to right, are: Toni Dally, Nurse Manager, Cardiovascular Care Unit, PMC; Louise LoPresto, Consultant, Health Systems, Provider Relations, BCNEPA; Paulette Nish, Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer, PMC; William Cors, MD, Vice President and Chief Medical Quality Officer, PMC; Kathy Kuck, President and CEO, PMC; Lynn Lansdowne, Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer, PMC; and John Polishan, Nurse Manager, Cardiac Cath Lab, PMC.