New lab to treat heart rhythm disturbances next phase in St. Joseph Medical Center Heart Institute expansion

Expanded facility is part of a $13.5 million upgrade to heart and vascular services

Patients with cardiac rhythm disturbances, such as atrial fibrillation, Wolff-Parkinson-White and sick sinus syndrome, are now being treated at Penn State Health St. Joseph Medical Center in a new electrophysiology laboratory that opened Tuesday.

The newly renovated and expanded facility is part of a $13.5 million upgrade to heart and vascular services at St. Joseph Medical Center.

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“We have been leaders in this community around the use of new technologies to improve the quality of life for patients with chronic or potentially dangerous heart rhythm problems,” said Dr. Chris Rogers, cardiac electrophysiologist, Penn State Health Medical Group – Berks Cardiology.

“Our intent is to continually improve our capabilities to ensure that we can bring our patients the widest range of specialized treatments close to home.”

The lab is fully equipped with state-of-the-art technology to help restore normal heart rhythm.

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New imaging technology will enable the cardiac electrophysiologists to treat patients with less radiation, while new telecommunication technology will improve collaboration and communication during procedures. The way the lab is designed allows for improved movement and efficiencies throughout the room.

“The investments in the expansion of our Heart Institute’s capabilities are a testament to the experience and expertise of the innovative cardiologists who practice at Penn State Health and who are committed to remaining on the leading edge of cardiac interventions that improve the quality of life for those who live in Berks County and beyond,” said Joseph Frank, regional hospital president, Penn State Health, East Region.

The expansion of the electrophysiology capabilities is the most recent part of a five-phase, $13.5 million project to reconfigure existing cardiac catheterization labs. The first phase of this project, a new hybrid cardiac catheterization lab, opened in February 2019.

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