University of Colorado Hospital recognized for providing expert pulmonary hypertension care

UCH is the first and only hospital in the state recognized as a Pulmonary Hypertension Center of Comprehensive Care
Feb. 16, 2015

AURORA, Colo. (Feb. 16, 2015) — University of Colorado Hospital (UCH) is now accredited as a Center of Comprehensive Care (CCC) through the Pulmonary Hypertension Care Centers (PHCC) program. This effort, initiated and managed by the Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA) and its Scientific Leadership Council, seeks to improve the quality of care and ultimately the health outcomes of patients with pulmonary hypertension (PH), specifically pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH).

Dr. David Badesch, director of UCH’s Pulmonary Hypertension Program

In someone with PAH, the right side of the heart has to work hard to push an adequate amount of blood through narrowed, stiff arteries in the lungs. Eventually, the extra stress causes the heart to enlarge and become less flexible, compromising the heart’s ability to move blood out of the heart, through the lungs, and into the rest of the body. If left untreated, patients with this rare and debilitating disease can ultimately die from right-sided heart failure. Without diagnosis the average length of survival is 2.8 years.

Despite medical advances, many patients will see three or more different physicians before they are properly diagnosed. Even with the availability and success of PH-targeted therapies, long-term health outcomes are not optimal as many patients are hospitalized due to PH complications, require transplantation if therapies do not work, or do not survive. As such, there is an urgent need for medical institutions to diagnose PH and provide patients with the necessary treatments and support.

The CCC designation recognizes UCH for providing expert-level care for PH patients and also making important contributions to research and education.

“Our research has helped lead the development of many new treatments and therapies, and in fact, we treat patients with drugs that we’ve helped develop right here in Colorado,” said Dr. David Badesch, director of UCH’s Pulmonary Hypertension Program.  “Patients are often given the opportunity to participate in clinical trials and receive state-of-the-art treatment for this serious disease.”

For more information about PHCC and its accreditation criteria, please visit

To make an appointment with our Pulmonary Hypertension Clinic call 720-848-5300.

About University of Colorado Hospital

University of Colorado Hospital is the Rocky Mountain region’s leading academic medical center.  UCH is best known as an innovator in patient care and often as one of the first hospitals to bring new medicine to the patients’ bedside.  University HealthSystem Consortium named UCH the #1 Academic Medical Center in quality in the nation in both 2011 and 2012, and U.S. News & World Report calls University of Colorado Hospital the best hospital in the state.  UCH is one of five Colorado hospitals that make up UCHealth.  The hospital’s physicians are affiliated with the University of Colorado School of Medicine, part of the University of Colorado system.  Based on the expansive Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora, CO, the hospital is where patient care, research and education converge to establish the future of health care delivery.

About the Pulmonary Hypertension Association

Headquartered in Silver Spring, Md., the Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA) is the country’s leading pulmonary hypertension organization. Its mission is to find ways to prevent and cure pulmonary hypertension and provide hope for the community through support, education, research, advocacy and awareness. PHA does this by connecting and working together with the entire PH community of patients, families and medical professionals. Among its programs, PHA facilitates more than 245 support groups around the country and delivers continuing education for medical professionals.