Background: The US Food and Drug Administration recently approved a transcatheter aortic valve for patients for whom open heart surgery is prohibitively risky.
Methods: A multidisciplinary heart valve team partnered with administration to launch a transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) program. Clinical registries were used to show robust valve caseloads and outcomes at our Veterans Affairs (VA) facility and to project future volumes. A TAVR business plan was approved by the VA leadership as part of a multiphase project to upgrade and expand our surgical facilities.
Results: The heart valve team completed a training program that included simulations and visits to established TAVR centers. Patients were evaluated and screened through a streamlined process, and the program was initiated successfully.
Conclusions: Establishing a TAVR program at a VA facility requires a multidisciplinary team with experience in heart valve and endovascular therapies and a supportive administration willing to invest in a sophisticated infrastructure.
Published by Elsevier Inc.