March 8, 2023

St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center Earns Blue Distinction Center+ Designation for Cardiac Care

Brighton, MA – Steward St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center has received a Blue Distinction® Center+ for Cardiac Care designation by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, as part of the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program. Blue Distinction Centers are nationally designated providers that have proven to deliver quality care with safe practices that lead to better health outcomes for patients.

In the United States, one person dies every 34 seconds from a cardiovascular disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Blue Distinction Centers+ for Cardiac Care empower patients with the information they need to choose more affordable, quality cardiac care that is in-network. To receive a Blue Distinction Center+ for Cardiac Care designation, health care facilities must meet quality and safety standards first, and then demonstrate better cost-efficiency compared to other facilities. They must deliver safe and effective cardiac care for: 

  • Percutaneous coronary interventions
  • Coronary artery bypass graft
  • Aortic valve replacement
  • Mitral valve replacement and repair

“St. Elizabeth’s has built a strong reputation for delivering advanced, life-saving care for many types of cardiac conditions,” said Dr. Joseph P. Carrozza, Jr., Chief of Cardiovascular Medicine at St. Elizabeth’s and Professor of Medicine at Tufts University School of Medicine.  “Whether its minimally invasive procedures to correct structural heart disease with better outcomes, or innovative practices to manage chronic conditions, our cardiac care program has become one of the most recognized and sought-out programs in the region.”

“I am tremendously proud of our team of experts who not only deliver best-in-class care, but also continually find ways of improving our cardiac program to better meet the complex needs of our patients,” said Paul Smith, President, St. Elizabeth’s. “Our staff has done amazing work to have earned this recognition.”

Health care facilities recognized as Blue Distinction Centers+ are assessed using quality information supplied by facilities and third-party data registries, and cost measures derived from Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies’ medical claims. Quality measures were developed with input from the medical community and leading accreditation and quality organizations. Only those health care facilities that first meet the quality measures for Blue Distinction Centers are considered for designation as a Blue Distinction Center+.

Nationally, Blue Distinction Centers for Cardiac Care are providing quality care for patients and have lower in-hospital mortality rates and lower bleeding complication rates for angioplasty than non-Blue Distinction Centers. Designated facilities also meet additional national standards, with patients facing fewer readmissions and mortality rates for coronary artery bypass graft procedures and heart attacks, compared to facilities that do not meet the criteria. In addition to meeting the quality criteria, on average, Blue Distinction Centers+ for Cardiac Care are 21% more cost-efficient than their non-Blue Distinction Centers+ peers.

Since 2006, the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program has helped patients find quality specialty care in the areas of bariatric surgery, cancer care, cardiac care, cellular immunotherapy, fertility care, gene therapy, knee and hip replacements, maternity care, spine surgery, substance use treatment and recovery, and transplants, while encouraging health care professionals to improve the care they deliver.

For more information about the program and for a complete listing of the designated providers, visit