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Children’s Heart Center Surgical Outcomes

Three Star Program • 3 out of 3 Stars – Highest Rating Available


Children’s Heart Center at Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital – earned the three-star rating, the highest possible distinction, from The Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS). At Children’s Heart Center, we strive to be transparent and provide the community with up-to-date information on our patient outcomes data. We hope this data serves as a helpful resource when making informed decisions regarding your child’s care.

Children’s Heart Center – named one of the top 50 best children's hospitals nationally in Cardiology & Heart Surgery by U.S. News & World Report – in collaboration with pediatric sub-specialists at McGovern Medical School at UTHealth, provides comprehensive care for newborns and children, with the ability to transition into adult congenital cardiac care.

97.3% Survival Rate, better than the national average

For more information contact Becky Sam, BSN, RN, CPN, CCRN, pediatric cardiovascular surgery nurse coordinator, at Rebecca.M.Sam@uth.tmc.edu

Children’s Heart Center has earned a distinguished three-star rating, the highest rating available, from The Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) for its patient care and outcomes in congenital heart surgery. As one of only 12 three-star programs of the STS’s 119 participating programs, Children’s Heart Center ranks among the elite in the United States and Canada for congenital heart surgery.

Each year, participating centers submit their data to the Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS), Congenital Heart Surgery Database (CHSD), to compare their outcomes against STS national benchmarks. Below is an overview of Children’s Heart Center’s surgical outcomes data from January 1, 2014 – December 31, 2017.

To view Children’s Heart Center’s STS report, click here. Learn more about the STS star rating.

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What does risk adjustment mean?

The STS uses a mortality risk model to allow for more meaningful comparison of any given hospital to the total of all hospitals performing pediatric and congenital heart surgery and participating in the CHSD. Risk adjustment is a method of measuring surgical results that takes into account how sick patients were before treatment. Hospitals that treat medically complex patients are expected to have higher rates of mortality according to the STS, which may be due to the patient’s condition or the procedural complexity required to treat them. The CHSD mortality risk model accounts for specific variables such as age and preoperative factors when comparing Centers, all of which can affect surgical results.

Children’s Heart Center Surgical Volume

January 2014 - December 2017

*Note: All cases reported, not just index cases. Source: STS Database, Table 1

STAT Category

The STS classifies cardiac cases into five categories, 1 – 5, based on complexity of the procedure. Category 1 is the least complex and Category 5 is the most complex with the highest risk of mortality (death). The affiliated team of board-certified pediatric and congenital heart surgeons treats the full spectrum of pediatric and congenital heart conditions, from the simplest to the most complex.

Volume by STAT Category

*Source: STS Database, Table 1

Volume and Mortality Rate by STAT Category

The STS mortality metrics are risk-adjusted to allow for more level comparison of any given hospital participating in the database with factors such as acuity, complexity and comorbidities taken into account.

MORTALITY BY STAT CATEGORY (January 2014 - December 2017)
STAT CategoryNumber of ProceduresNumber of Mortalities% MortalitySTS National Benchmark
Category 121010.5%0.4%
Category 224652.0%1.6%
Category 38900.0%2.3%
Category 4189115.8%6.4%
Category 55347.5%14.5%
Source: STS Database, Table 16

Index Procedure Volume and Mortality Rate

The data below shows Children’s Heart Center’s heart surgery volume and mortality rate by procedure type. Overall, having a lower mortality rate than the STS national benchmark is optimal. Children’s Heart Center’s unadjusted mortality rate (2.7%) is less than the national average (2.9%).

INDEX PROCEDURE VOLUME AND MORTALITY RATE (January 2014 - December 2017)
Index ProcedureNumber of ProceduresNumber of Mortalities% MortalitySTS National Benchmark
Arterial switch operation (ASO)2000.0%2.2%
ASO + VSD Repair1000.0%4.6%
Atrioventricular canal repair (AVC)2600.0%2.5%
Coarctation4812.1%1.5%
Fontan5300.0%1.0%
Glenn / HemiFontan6800.0%1.8%
Norwood*3538.6%15.0%
Truncus Arteriosus Repair400.0%9.5%
Ventricular Septal Defect (VSD) Repair6600.0%0.5%
Tetrology of Fallot6035.0%1.3%
*Note: Operative Mortality is defined as any death, regardless of cause occurring (1) within 30 days after surgery in or out of the hospital, and (2) after 30 days during the same hospitalization subsequent to the operation. Source: STS Database, Table 18

Procedures by Age Group

Children’s Heart Center at Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital specializes in the treatment of heart conditions for children of all ages, caring for a large population of high-risk neonates and infants, making up more than 67% of the operations performed from January 1, 2014 – December 31, 2017.Our focus on age-appropriate surgical planning and management ensures the best possible outcomes for patients of all ages.

Volume by Age Group January 2014 - December 2017

STAT Category Percent by Patient Age Group

January 2014 – December 2017

STAT Category 1: Percent by Age Group

STAT Category 2: Percent by Age Group

STAT Category 3: Percent by Age Group

STAT Category 4: Percent by Age Group

STAT Category 5: Percent by Age Group

Contact Us

Pediatric Cardiology Clinic
The University of Texas Health Science Center Professional Building
6410 Fannin, Suite 370
Houston, TX 77030
Phone: (713) 486-6755

Pediatric Cardiovascular Surgery Clinic
The University of Texas Health Science Center Professional Building
6410 Fannin, Suite 950
Houston, TX 77030

Clinic Phone: (832) 325-7234
Nurse Line: (713) 500-7324