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Primary care physicians recognized for quality heart and stroke care

The National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) and the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association (AHA/ASA) recently announced that R. Philip Marler, M.D., F.A.C.P.Lajos Toth, M.D., F.A.C.P.Kenneth W. Fogarty II, M.D.Marti Gibbs, M.D.John N. Range, M.D., and Andrew B. Reisman, M.D., of The Longstreet Clinic, P.C., have received recognition from the Heart/Stroke Recognition Program for providing quality care to their patients with cardiovascular disease or who have had a stroke. Drs. Marler and Toth originally were recognized three years ago.

The Heart/Stroke Recognition Program was designed to improve the quality of care that patients with cardiovascular disease or who have had a stroke receive by recognizing physicians who deliver this quality care. To receive recognition, which is valid for three years, the six TLC physicians submitted data that demonstrates performance that meets the program’s key cardiovascular and stroke care measures.

These measures include blood pressure and cholesterol control, among others. When people with cardiovascular disease or who have had a stroke receive quality care as outlined by these measures, they are less likely to suffer additional complications, such as a second heart attack or stroke.

Drs. Marler, Toth and Fogarty practice at The Longstreet Clinic’s Department of Internal Medicine in Gainesville, while Drs. Gibbs, Range and Reisman see patients in Oakwood at TLC’s Department of Family Medicine.

Drs. Marler, Toth, Gibbs and Reisman also are recognized by the Diabetes Recognition Program, which is facilitated by the NCQA and the American Diabetes Association. Physicians accepted through the program have established track records for providing quality care to their patients with diabetes.

There are only 24 physicians in the state of Georgia who are certified in both the heart/stroke and diabetes programs, and only 13 who are recognized for heart/stroke care.

“Quality patient care translates into lives saved, said Sidney Smith, professor of medicine at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and past chief science officer of the American Heart Association. “This is why the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association is supporting a recognition program for clinicians providing quality care. The program closes the gap by putting into practice AHA/ASA guidelines and statements to fight heart disease and stroke.”

More than 60 million Americans have one or more types of cardiovascular disease, and it is the leading cause of death in the United States. Approximately 700,000 Americans suffer a stroke each year. Stroke is the third-leading cause of death and a leading cause of severe and long-term disability. Despite evidence that reducing cholesterol levels and controlling high blood pressure to prevent further health complications, many cardiac and stroke patients are not treated effectively for these symptoms.

NCQA is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to improving health care quality. NCQA accredits and certifies a wide range of health care organizations and recognizes clinicians and practices in key areas of performance. For more information, visit www.ncqa.org.

The Longstreet Clinic, P.C. (TLC), incorporated in 1994, is a multi-specialty medical group owned and managed by physicians. TLC has grown to include nearly 90 physicians in over 15 specialties, and more than 35 nurse practitioners, physicians assistants and certified nurse midwives. In 2011, The Longstreet Clinic was ranked by the Atlanta Business Chronicle as the eighth largest physician group practice in Metro Atlanta, and as the third largest independent group practice. With its main campus located in Gainesville, TLC physicians also see patients at offices in Oakwood, Buford, Braselton, Dahlonega, Baldwin, Cumming and Toccoa. Doctors you know. Care you trust. The Longstreet Clinic, where patient care is always centered around you.

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