Many Cardiac Catheterization Laboratories Underused in Veterans Administration Hospitals:

Better Planning and Control Needed

HRD-76-168: Published: Feb 28, 1977. Publicly Released: Feb 28, 1977.

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Better management and control of costly cardiac catheterization laboratories is needed in Veterans Administration (VA) hospitals.

Of 12 laboratories reviewed, 11 did not meet minimum VA work load standards of 150 patients a year. Some duplicated services that were available at nearby hospitals. Eight of the 12 laboratories were not located at hospitals where cardiovascular surgery is regularly performed, thus exposing patients to unnecessary risks. VA did not adequately plan nor control cardiac catheterization programs to ensure their need and success.

Recommendation for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Recommendation: The Administrator of Veterans Affairs should: (1) close underused cardiac catheterization laboratories; (2) reevaluate the operation of these laboratories at hospitals unable to perform cardiovascular surgery in emergencies; (3) establish sharing or contractual arrangements to provide this service; and (4) revise procedures to require data to justify new laboratories.

    Agency Affected:


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