Skip to Main Content


  • Avera Heart Hospital Receives Carotid Stenting Accreditation

Published on June 22, 2012

Avera Heart Hospital of South Dakota, Receives Carotid Stenting Accreditation by the Intersocietal Accreditation Commission

Dr. Tommy Reynolds Stent Placement Surgery 

Dr. Tommy Reynolds and Dr. Michael Bacharach of North Central Heart Institute, place a carotid stent in the cardiac catheterization lab at the Avera Heart Hospital.

Avera Heart Hospital of South Dakota has been granted a three-year term of accreditation in Carotid Stenting by the Intersocietal Accreditation Commission (IAC). Avera Heart Hospital is the fifth facility in the nation to receive this designation. The IAC grants accreditation only to those facilities that are found to have processes in place to ensure quality patient care, in compliance with national standards.

“It is my pleasure to congratulate everyone who worked to achieve this national accreditation in the area of carotid stenting,” said Dr. Michael Bacharach, Vascular Specialist with North Central Heart Institute. “This accreditation is a testament to the clinical quality, care standards, and treatment options that are offered to our patients with vascular medical needs at the Avera Heart Hospital.”

Cardiovascular diseases are the No. 1 cause of death in the United States. On average, one American dies every 39 seconds of cardiovascular disease – disorders of the heart and blood vessels. According to the American Heart Association, the total direct and indirect cost of cardiovascular disease and stroke in the U.S. for 2010 was an estimated $503.2 billion.

Specifically, decreased blood flow to the brain caused by plaque on the inside of the carotid arteries is a serious cardiovascular condition that may lead to stroke. Carotid stenting is a procedure used at the site of the blockage to provide support to keep the artery open. This procedure, done in the cardiac catheterization lab, can serve as an alternative to carotid surgery in some patients. While carotid stenting can be extremely beneficial in reducing the risk of stroke due to carotid artery disease, the effectiveness of the procedure is significantly impacted by the performing facility’s adherence to benchmarks related to standards defining optimal resources, training and outcomes.

“The IAC is the premier, independent, nationally recognized accrediting body that represents multiple specialties,” said Dr. Tommy Reynolds, Vascular Specialist with North Central Heart Institute. “Patients can feel confident in the care that is offered at an institution that receives their support.”

Accreditation by the IAC means that Avera Heart Hospital has undergone a thorough review of its operational and technical components by a panel of experts in the field of Carotid Stenting. The IAC’s comprehensive application process includes a detailed procedure review. The IAC Carotid Stenting accreditation program benefits from multi-specialty support, as illustrated by the national, medical societies serving in the role of sponsoring organizations and providing representatives to the Board of Directors.

About Avera Heart Hospital

The Avera Heart Hospital of South Dakota is the region's first and only hospital dedicated solely to the diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular disease. By focusing on the nation's number one killer, patients receive the benefits of advanced technology and personalized services focused on their individual needs. The hospital is a cooperative venture between Avera McKennan and North Central Heart Institute.