Treating Heart-Failure

Definition of Heart Failure

Heart failure means your heart muscle does not pump as much blood as your body needs. Failure does not mean that your heart has stopped. It means that your heart is not pumping as well as it should. Because your heart cannot pump well, your body tries to make up for it. To do this:

  • Your body holds on to salt and water. This increases the amount of blood in your bloodstream.
  • Your heart beats faster.
  • Your heart becomes enlarged.

Core Measures for Heart Failure

Core Measures indicate how many patients at Southeast Georgia Health System receive treatments commonly regarded as effective in treating heart failure. We compare our scores to other facilities at the national and state level.

Heart Failure Indicators
Camden average (01/13-12/13) Brunswick average
Georgia average*(07/12-06/13) US
Number of records reviewed for these indicators during time period 21 241 NA NA
Complete discharge instructions 100% 89.6% 91.0% 94.0%
Evaluation of Left Ventricular Function 100% 99.6% 99.0% 99.0%
ACE Inhibitor or ARB for Left Ventricular Systolic Dysfunction 100% (9 cases) 95.4% 97.0% 97.0%


Complete Discharge Instruction-This score shows the percentage of heart failure patients who were taught how to manage their condition at home once they leave the hospital. Congestive heart failure does not go away. It must be managed every day with diet, exercise, medication, and other methods. Patients receive thorough discharge instructions to help them control heart failure and prevent further organ damage. The instructions must include information about diet, exercise, weight monitoring, follow-up appointments, medications and signs and symptoms that should be reported to a doctor.

Evaluation of Left Ventricular Function-This score shows the percentage of patients who had the left side of their heart assessed during their hospital stay. The left side of the heart is where the main pumping chamber is located. By assessing it, doctors can tell how well it is pumping and what type of treatment is needed.

ACE Inhibitor or ARB for Left Ventricular Systolic Dysfunction-Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors or angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) are drugs that are especially helpful for people with damage on the left side of their heart (left ventricular systolic dysfunction). Both ACE inhibitors and ARBs can help reduce the risk of death after a heart attack by lowering blood pressure. This score shows the percentage of people with left ventricular systolic dysfunction who were prescribed ACE inhibitors or ARBs when they were discharged.