Our program is predicated upon the mission statement: “We wish to provide ridiculously wonderful care to children and families affected by congenital heart disease.” We refer to this mission statement often and have kept its meaning and intent as the guiding principle in how we have planned and produced our programmatic growth. We realize the only manner in achieving this mission is to treat congenital cardiac disease with a multidisciplinary “team sport” approach.
We provide 24/7 coverage in regards to cardiology, cardiac surgery, anesthesia, pediatric and neonatal intensive care unit physicians as well as child life and other ancillary services. We place critical importance on a multidisciplinary approach to all academic and clinical conferences as well as in the manner by which every discussion is had with family members. Our program has grown in overall surgical volumes by 49 percent over the past five years. We currently perform some 350-375 surgical procedures per year, which places us within the context of moderate to high volume programs within the United States. As a reference, over 65 percent of congenital cardiac surgical programs perform less than 200 cases per year.
To build our program, we have directed over 25 outreach trips and visits during the past five years to solidify relationships locally as well as within both South and West Texas. We currently receive approximately 30-35 percent of our volume from outside Bexar County. In addition, approximately 45 percent of our volume is in the arena of neonatal care. Our commitment to organizing these trips has been a successful example of how a service line can partner with the hospital to work towards programmatic volume growth. Overall mortality for congenital cardiac surgery is 3.9 percent nationwide as seen in a study by Pasquali et. al published in Pediatrics (Jan. 2012) where they evaluated 68 centers and 35,6776 operations from 2006-2009. This table represents recent mortality statistics for our program.