News Room


Tuesday, November 21, 2017 SJRMC First in New Mexico to Use Right Side Impella® Heart Pump, Participate in National Cardiogenic Shock Initiative

San Juan Regional Medical Center’s Cardiology program is proud to announce some major advances in how we care for patients who have suffered both a heart attack and shock. We are the first hospital in the state of New Mexico to acquire and use the right ventricular Impella heart pump, the Impella RP. It is FDA approved for patients with right heart failure and allows the patient’s heart to rest and recover its ability to pump blood. The Impella RP is also lifesaving for patients who experience cardiogenic shock during acute myocardial infarction, since 30 percent of shock patients experience biventricular failure. 

San Juan Regional Medical Center is the only provider in the Four Corners with this life-saving technology and is known as a leader for its Impella program for cardiogenic shock patients. In fact, the hospital is the only one in New Mexico to be invited to participate in the National Cardiogenic Shock Initiative. This initiative has increased cardiogenic shock survival rates from 51 percent to 76 percent by using a defined treatment protocol which includes use of the Impella heart pump. An elite group of hospitals across the nation, including San Juan Regional Medical Center, is enrolling patients in the Initiative and collecting quality data in an effort to make further advances improving the survival rate of cardiogenic shock patients. 

Interventional Cardiologist Dr. Charles Wilkins attended the first National Cardiogenic Shock Initiative (NCSI) meeting in Denver on October 29, and is excited for San Juan Regional Medical Center to be part of this important and groundbreaking study.

“The National Cardiogenic Shock Initiative is truly saving lives across the nation. We are committed to working together with the hospitals involved in the Initiative to systematize best practices. We believe the quality data we’ll be able to provide will help to further improve the outcomes for cardiogenic shock patients,” Dr. Wilkins said.  

Dr. Wilkins and Cardiac Cath Lab Supervisor Tammie Herrera are available to explain in more detail how the Right Side Impella is helping our patients, as well as answer any questions about patient participation in the National Cardiogenic Shock Initiative. Please contact Laura Werbner to set up interviews.  

San Juan Regional Medical Center is a non-profit, acute care hospital and Level III Trauma Center with 194 licensed beds. Our mission is to personalize healthcare and create enthusiasm and vitality in healing. As a sole community provider in San Juan County, we deliver a remarkable range of highly personalized and specialized healthcare services to the people of the entire Four Corners region. San Juan Regional Medical Center, a Certified Primary Stroke Center, is accredited by Det Norske Veritas. More information is available at

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