By: Nur Kausar, www.thespectrum.com
CEDAR CITY - Cardiologist Dr. Aarush Manchanda took President Barack Obama's words last year on improving health care to heart, especially when the president named systems like Geisinger Health in rural Pennsylvania and Intermountain Healthcare in Utah as model systems.
Manchanda had a fellowship position at Geisinger in Danville, Penn., and when searching for a place to start his new practice, found Valley View Medical Center matched his requirements.
"They both have an integrated health care system, provide quality care, have much better outcomes and are more connected with patients, with a community feeling," Manchanda said when comparing Geisinger with VVMC and his decision to work in an Intermountain facility. "I found the same taste in this job."
The move is a win for the community as well, said VVMC Hospital Administrator Jason Wilson, because Cedar City will now have its own heart clinic where patients can receive non-invasive cardiac services without making unnecessary, expensive trips to the emergency room or St. George.
"This will help us follow the rule-out' protocol for emergency patients," Wilson said, as patients complaining of chest pain or other symptoms could get checked at the new clinic to better determine what they need. "So if you're having a gall bladder attack they won't take you down in an ambulance and give you an angiogram."
Wilson said along with hiring at least two new staff members for the heart clinic, current hospital staff is also receiving heart-related training and working with the latest technology for services like stress tests, ultrasounds, cardiac CT scans, blood clot checks and other preventative care Manchanda hopes to provide.
"This service will meet such a huge demand in our area," said VVMC Communications Director Scott Monroe, noting that before the clinic, the hospital had very limited resources for these types of tests.Wilson said the hospital searched for a cardiologist for three years, hitting barriers because of a scarcity within the profession and high competition with other hospitals in more popular locations.