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TRENTON, N.J. and WALTHAM, Mass., May 8, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Trenton Health Team (THT) and BG Medicine (Nasdaq:BGMD) today announced that THT has adopted the BGM Galectin-3® test throughout its organization to identify patients at near term risk for heart failure rehospitalization. THT is a community health improvement collaborative that serves the six zip codes of Trenton, New Jersey and is in the process of developing a Medicaid accountable care organization (ACO).
Reducing unplanned readmissions for patients continues to be one of the most urgent and pressing issues facing hospitals in the U.S. today, particularly since October 2012, when the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) enacted new rules that impose significant financial penalties on hospitals with excessive 30-day hospital readmission rates. Among the heart failure population, hospital readmissions can approach up to 25% within 30 days, putting a substantial economic and emotional burden on patients and families, while costing the healthcare system billions of dollars.
"As a collaborative looking to develop an accountable care organization, we are always looking for products and programs that can deliver better quality healthcare while reducing overall costs. THT is committed to reducing unplanned hospital readmissions across the board by 15% in 2013, and the Galectin-3 diagnostic blood test should help us make an impact on readmission rates in one of the most costly patient populations—chronic heart failure patients," stated Dr. Robert Remstein, the President of THT and Vice President for accountable care at Capital Health. "This test can assist our urban based clinicians in identification of patients with heart failure at highest risk for poor outcomes, and guide them towards cost effective care that will improve outcomes and lower overall health care costs."
"Measuring Galectin-3 levels is a simple way to identify patients who are at higher risk of poor outcomes resulting from cardiovascular disease leading to unplanned readmission," stated Eric Bouvier, President and CEO of BG Medicine. "The Trenton Healthcare Team is leading the charge by adopting a broad scope of efforts to reduce costly hospital readmissions."
About Galectin-3 Testing
Galectin-3 has been implicated in a variety of biological processes important in the development and progression of heart failure. Higher levels of galectin-3 are associated with a more aggressive form of heart failure, which may make identification of high-risk patients using galectin-3 testing an important part of patient care. Galectin-3 testing may be useful in helping physicians determine which patients are at higher risk of death or hospitalization, including 30-day readmission. www.galectin-3.com
About BG Medicine, Inc.
BG Medicine, Inc. (Nasdaq:BGMD) is a diagnostics company focused on the development and commercialization of novel cardiovascular tests to address significant unmet medical needs, improve patient outcomes and reduce healthcare costs. The Company has two products: the BGM Galectin-3® test for use in patients with chronic heart failure is available in the United States and Europe; and the CardioSCORE™ test for the risk prediction of major cardiovascular events is expected to be launched in Europe in the first half of 2013. For additional information about BG Medicine, heart failure and galectin-3 testing, please visit www.bg-medicine.com and www.galectin-3.com.
About the Trenton Health Team
Trenton Health Team (THT) is an alliance of the city's major providers of healthcare services including Capital Health, St. Francis Medical Center, Henry J. Austin Health Center and the city's Health Department. In collaboration with residents and the city's active social services network, THT is developing an integrated healthcare delivery system to transform the city's fragmented primary care system and restore health to the city. THT aims to make Trenton the healthiest city in the state. The THT receives generous support from The Nicholson Foundation, corporate partners and other foundations. For more information, visit www.trentonhealthteam.org.
About Accountable Care Organizations
Accountable care organizations (ACOs) are groups of doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers, who come together voluntarily to give coordinated high quality care to the Medicare patients they serve. Coordinated care helps ensure that patients, especially the chronically ill, get the right care at the right time, with the goal of avoiding unnecessary duplication of services and preventing medical errors. When an ACO succeeds in both delivering high-quality care and spending health care dollars more wisely, it will share in the savings it achieves for the Medicare program.
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