Mount Nittany Medical Center cardiovascular pavilion opens doors

September 04, 2019
7 min read

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Mount Nittany Medical Center opened its new 26,000-square-foot cardiovascular pavilion to patients on Wednesday, September 4.

Constructed directly above the Medical Center’s emergency department, the pavilion is equipped with precise, industry-leading technologies within a space designed for physical and emotional healing. With the patient experience in mind, the pavilion features updated cardiac catheterization lab and electrophysiology lab spaces, complete with new imaging and monitoring equipment.

The structure creates an enhanced workflow of the space, allowing for a more efficient, private and comfortable patient experience. Additionally, a large waiting area, situated within the sunlight structure; eight to ten convenient flex bay patient areas; electrocardiogram (EKG) exam room, four echocardiography/stress test exam rooms; and bright, comfortable patient meeting areas are just some of the updated features that will help us serve the growing number of people who trust the health system with their heart.

“This pavilion is another mark of our continued investment to ensure access to healthcare to meet the growing demand for our services,” said Kathleen Rhine, president and CEO, Mount Nittany Health. “This space is a visible reflection of the exceptional quality of the cardiovascular and electrophysiology program that we have built at Mount Nittany Medical Center under the leadership of our physicians.”

Led by interventional cardiologist Albert Zoda, MD, FACC, the cardiovascular program at Mount Nittany Medical Center is one of only 63 hospitals in the country with ACE™ accreditation, achieving the gold standard for life-saving and life-improving medicine. ACE is an independent, physician-led organization that evaluates and monitors facilities providing cardiovascular care.

Every second in which an artery is blocked is critical to the heart. For patients experiencing a heart attack, opening the artery as quickly as possible is most important. When the artery is blocked, this threatens the heart muscle, which could cause significant, even fatal damage to the heart. The national benchmark for opening a blockage is 90 minutes. At Mount Nittany Medical Center, the average time from arrival at the emergency department to opening the artery is 53 minutes, saving precious tissue and lives.

In addition, people who experience a disruption or abnormality in the rhythm of their heart, arrhythmias, are also evaluated, diagnosed and treated at Mount Nittany Medical Center through the electrophysiology program to restore regular rhythms. People with several conditions may be diagnosed and treated in the electrophysiology lab, including ventricular tachycardia, sudden cardiac arrest, atrial fibrillation, atrial flutter, heart failure requiring an implanted device-based therapy, bradycardia, syncope (fainting) and supraventricular tachycardia. Caring for more than 450 patients annually, physicians perform diagnostic electrophysiology studies, as well as treatment procedures, including cardiac ablation, cardioversions, and implantation of pacemakers and cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs), to treat the heart and improve the quality of the person’s life.

Cardiovascular services at Mount Nittany Health, including the IAC-accredited echocardiography lab, are provided by a team of staff, nurses, technicians, physicians, and dedicated cardiologists from Mount Nittany Physician Group, Geisinger and Penn State Health.

Mount Nittany Health’s commitment to providing the region with advanced cardiovascular services started in 2000 when it opened Centre County’s first and only cardiac catheterization lab. The system added interventional services and stents in 2007. The cardiovascular team has responded to more than 1,000 heart alerts, and currently performs more than 7,000 tests and procedures every year to treat conditions ranging from heart rhythm disturbances to heart attacks and heart failure.

To date, more than $4.5 million in community support has been raised for the pavilion.

To learn more about Mount Nittany Health and its investments in the community to make you healthier, visit

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