Swedish to offer ventricular assist device as part of new heart failure program

February 14, 2017 Swedish Blogger


Swedish Medical Center, Puget Sound’s largest provider of cardiovascular care, won a competitive grant in 2014 and founded the John L. Lock Jr. Advanced Cardiac Support Program. Our goal was to provide holistic care to patients struggling with heart failure. Three years later, we are one of the most comprehensive congestive heart failure programs in the Pacific Northwest.  

Now, we are expanding our advanced heart failure services to include left ventricular assist devices (LVAD). These surgically implanted devices are heart pumps that take over the responsibility of pumping blood for an ailing heart.  The devices can make a significant difference:  For patients who need an LVAD, the heart pump can turn a one-year survival rate of 10 percent into a two-year survival rate of 80 percent.

Dedicated specialists for advanced heart failure

For all of our patients who are part of our new Advanced Heart Failure Program, we provide holistic care by bringing together in one location: 

  • Physicians, advanced practice providers and nurses all trained in and focused on heart failure care
  • A pharmacist
  • A dietitian
  • A social worker
  • A financial counselor

Our goal is to help our patients navigate the complicated medical system, assure that they have the proper medication regimen and get the outside services they may need for success.

As Puget Sound grows, so does the burden of heart failure regionally. It’s estimated that in King County alone, eight to 12 people die each day from heart failure and that by age 40, a person has a 1 in 5 chance of having heart failure in his or her lifetime. 

Swedish has the track record to people with heart failure. We have recruited providers from top institutions across the country to manage heart failure and offer advanced levels of care. 

Swedish also is a leader in the Pacific Northwest in the use of the latest technology to treat advanced heart failure and cardiogenic shock (which occurs when the heart suddenly can’t pump enough blood and is usually caused by a severe heart attack). 

Recently, Swedish won an award for excellence in extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), a treatment that provides long-term breathing and heart support for patients with life-threatening heart or lung problems. 

And our well-established heart failure research program is currently recruiting patients for nine clinical trials. 

There have been many advances, both in medication and technology, that will offer new hope for heart failure patients. Learn more about our services online, or call 206-320-2982 to schedule a consultation.

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