HCMA Policy: HCM Centers of Excellence or Program as recognized by the HCMA
The HCMA Board of Directors, with assistance from the HCMA Advisors, shall establish criteria and procedures to designate HCM Centers of Excellence (CE) or HCM Program ) (HP). A CE or HP shall be named only after meeting all HCMA requirements. Upon designation, CEs and HP’s shall be listed in a ranking system to assist patients, families and referring health care systems in making choices for use of a CE or HP best for their situation. The HCMA shall not endorse a specific program and shall not guarantee services provided. Further the HCMA shall not advocate for substituting the care of a local cardiologist for the care at a CE or HP, but rather advocate that the local cardiologist work in cooperation with the CE or HP to ensure the highest quality of care possible.
HCMA staff, under the direction of the CEO, shall administer the application process including receiving and reviewing applications, verifying data, responding to questions, and informing applicants of results. As needed, and in an annual summary, the CEO shall report on CE designations to the Board and Advisors. Reports shall include periodic updates on CE OR HP applications and designations, communications related to CE OR HPs (e.g. inquiries, on-line discussions, annual meeting presentations, CE OR HP visits and collaborations of CE OR HPs with HCMA, International Summit presentations, etc.). Reports shall identify problems and issues related to use of the CE OR HP designation to ensure consistency and accuracy in use of the CE OR HP designation. Reports shall also address CE OR HP contributions such as improving access to treatment, research, training, CE OR HP collaborations, HCM awareness, and community service. Cautions shall be developed and applied to limit inappropriate uses of the HCMA CE OR HP designation (e.g. to denigrate services in a non-CE OR HP location). The CEO shall establish confidentiality, as appropriate, for CE OR HP information and communicate such policies to CE OR HPs (and CE OR HP applicants) and the HCMA Board.
In the event that a CE OR HP applicant wishes to appeal a decision in the CE OR HP application process, the CEO shall communicate the appeal request to the Chairman of the Board who will arrange a review of the decision by one or more persons not involved in the initial decision. Appeals shall be based on the criteria and application process and decisions shall be final. Information on appeals shall be included in reports.
Should patients, family members, or other interested parties raise concerns about the HCMA’s designation of a CE OR HP on such matters as quality of treatment and outcomes, legal disputes, or financial costs, the HCMA shall not address such issues under the association’s CE OR HP policy.
The HCMA Board and Advisors, upon review of periodic reports, may revise and extend this policy as necessary including procedures for on-going designation. As appropriate, the Board may authorize collection of fees or expenses associated with the CE OR HP process. The HCMA shall withdraw CE OR HP designation, with appropriate notification, appeals and complaint resolution, if objective analysis indicates that CE OR HP criteria are no longer being met.
Over the next few months the HCMA will be collecting the needed data to identify programs in accordance with our new terminology. While this process is underway programs will simply be listed. We hope to have this process completed by January 1, 2012.