11 September 2010

New Ratings for Heart Surgeons from Consumer Reports

KMOX - St. Louis

The Consumer Reports Health Ratings Center has published a list of fifty top-rated heart-bypass surgical groups in the United States — but no St. Louis-area cardiologists appear in it.

That’s because of the 221 surgical groups that voluntarily submitted data to Consumer Reports, not one was from St. Louis.

“We can’t figure out how St. Louis heart surgeons did unless they consent to release this data,” said Dr. John Santa, director of the Consumer Reports Health Ratings Center.

“I hope they see the beneficial effects of this ratings system and agree to release their data in the future because we think this is the best information out there for sorting out these important decisions,” Santa tells KMOX.

So what should you do if your heart surgeon doesn’t participate?

“If the heart surgery group you are considering has not volunteered to release their information, you should ask that heart surgeon for the information.   And if they won’t give it to you, you should look at your options.”

The surgeon ratings plus advice on getting the right care to treat heart disease are available in the October issue of Consumer Reports.

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