Representatives of the Washington area's health planning agencies yesterday agreed with the conclusions of a report calling for the careful monitoring, improvements or elimination of open heart surgery programs at city
The report, prepared for the agency by a panel of experts, labeled the open heart surgery programs at Georgetown and George Washington University hospitals "unacceptable," based on the numbers of operations performed there between 1975 and 1978, and the death rates for those operations.
However, both the report and members of the agencies noted that the two hospitals have taken major steps in the last year to improve the quality of their programs.
George Washington has had acceptably low mortality rates in the last year, they said, and Georgetown has recently named Dr. Robert Wallace, an internationally known cardiac surgeon and chief of surgery at the Mayo Clinic, as surgeon-in-chief of the hospital.
Members of the areawide Task Force on Tertiary Care made it clear when they adopted the report yesterday that the report's guidelines concerning mortality rates and numbers of operations are not "set in concrete." c
The report, which also says that no more cardiac surgery programs are needed in the metropolitan area right now, must go next to the boards of each of the area's health planning agencies for final adoption.