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NATION'S FIRST PROVIDER NETWORK FORMS FOR CARDIOVASCULAR CARE

 CHICAGO, March 31 /PRNewswire/ -- Forty of the country's leading cardiovascular physicians and their affiliated hospital administrators met yesterday in Chicago and formally established the first provider-led network to offer specialized cardiovascular services in a managed-care environment to corporations and health plans across the country.
 "The ultimate concept is that when a patient gets care in Minnesota, it looks the same as it does in Atlanta," said William D. Knopf, M.D., president of The National Cardiovascular Network (NCN). "If we can standardize care, then we can really tackle the issue of costs by figuring out where the fat is in the system and getting it out."
 The National Cardiovascular Network, a non-profit organization of cardiology physicians, cardiovascular surgeons and affiliated institutions, will be an important model in the effort to define national standards and procedures for cardiac care and control the costs of specialized health care.
 The members of NCN are geographically located throughout the country and have met rigid clinical and non-clinical eligibility criteria for acceptance into the network. Some specifics include attainment of efficiency and quality related volume levels for angioplasty and bypass procedures for both physicians and institutions, as well as outcome and utilization statistics. Also, network members must have an interest in cost effectiveness, and the ability and commitment to obtain specific data for presentation to payers.
 "An intrinsic part of NCN is our ability and commitment to provide sound and pertinent data on our results. We will be accountable for our services -- for the black and white results of our programs," said Knopf. "Data will be collected on an outgoing basis to ensure continued member compliance with the criteria and, as time goes on, to allow us to develop protocols and standards to further enhance our cost effectiveness."
 For more information on The Cardiovascular Network, contact William Knopf, M.D., P.O. Box 421369, Atlanta, GA, or call 404-851-5494.
 -0- 3/31/93
 /CONTACT: Lynn Peterson of Aydlotte & Cartwright, 404-551-5000, for The National Cardiovascular Network/


CO: The National Cardiovascular Network ST: Georgia IN: HEA SU: PDT

BR -- AT002 -- 1350 03/31/93 08:42 EST
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Date:Mar 31, 1993
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