Northeast Georgia Medical Center Recognized for Technology Leadership in Cardiac Care

Published: Wednesday, November 19, 2014

GAINESVILLE, Ga. – Northeast Georgia Medical Center (NGMC) is in the spotlight again for its award-winning cardiac care. The hospital was recently recognized as a "SuperNova" by Constellation Research for its innovative work gathering data on cardiac arrest victims using cloud-based software and mobile devices. Jason Grady, NR-Paramedic, Northeast Georgia Regional STEMI Coordinator, accepted the award on behalf of NGMC in San Francisco.

“In order to improve communication between paramedics and our Emergency Department regarding the care a cardiac patient has – or hasn’t – received before he or she arrives at the hospital, we created an easy-to-use, web-based questionnaire for EMS to complete,” says Grady.

Traditionally, EMS relayed the information via phone calls. But paper notes can be misplaced and memories can fade in a fast-paced environment like the ED, and inaccurate or incomplete information can be detrimental to a cardiac patient’s treatment. Often, paramedics have left the hospital by the time cardiologists need important details such as whether or not the patient has received CPR before EMS arrived at the scene.

NGMC was looking for a fast and efficient solution that would help staff ask the right questions consistently and first responders to convey vital information accurately.  Grady and his team researched different technologies, knowing that any solution needed to be mobile, cloud-based, secure and simple to use.

The team ultimately selected the combination of Smartsheet’s collaborative project management software and Apple’s iPad.  They worked with The Heart Center of NGMC’s physicians to create a web-based form allowing for “yes” or “no” responses to 19 cardiac patient information questions. These questions are reviewed on an iPad and completed in a matter of seconds. Once the form is submitted, the care team is updated instantly. Cardiologists can view this information on their mobile devices in route to the ED, providing extra time to refine treatment plans.

“For heart attack patients, seconds count, and improved communication means improved patient care,” says Tom Edwards, director of Heart & Vascular services at NGMC. “This award from a national group reinforces that NGMC is advancing cardiac care beyond our community and state.”  For more information about NGMC’s Heart & Vascular program, please visit