The Cardiac Cath Laboratory Services of Highlands Regional Medical Center provides services for invasive and noninvasive procedures and immediate post-procedure care. The department is staffed to be operated Monday through Friday, 7:00am - 4:00pm, or as needed.

A Cardiac Cath is defined as a medical procedure requiring the passage of a catheter into one or more cardiac chambers of the left and right heart, with or without coronary arteriograms, for the purpose of diagnosing congenital or acquired cardiovascular diseases, or for determining measurement of blood pressure flow. Cardiac caths also include the selective catheterization of the coronary ostia with injection of contrast medium into the coronary arteries.

Highlands Regional performs the following procedures:

  • Left and Right Heart Catheterization
  • Pacemaker Implantation
  • Defibrillator Implantation (ICD)
  • Biventricular Defibrillator change out (Bi-V) for congestive heart failure
  • IVC Filter Insertion (for deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
  • Diagnostic and Interventional Peripheral Procedures (peripheral vascular disease)
  • Angioplasty
  • Stents
  • Directional Atherectomy
  • Rotational Atherectomy
  • Kyphoplasty (vertebral fracture)
  • Temporary Pacemaker Insertion (for complete heart block)
  • Intra-aortic Balloon Pump Insertion (for cardiogenic shock)
  • Declotting of AV Fistula
  • Back Pain Injection

Scope and complexity of patient care

The Cardiac Cath Laboratory Services provides a safe and comfortable environment for both patients and personnel in order to provide optimum assistance to the physicians in meeting the emergency, preventive and restorative health needs of the patients. The Cardiac Cath Lab staff provides quality-conscious, competent and cost-effective care with respect for life and dignity.

The patient’s physical, psychological and social needs are assessed on admission, with a plan of care developed and revised as necessary. The patient is continually reassessed and modifications to that plan of care are based on reassessment of the patient. In the immediate post-procedure phase, the patient is under the direct supervision of the performing physician who maintains responsibility for the needs of the patient until the patient has been appropriately discharged from the Cardiac Cath Laboratory.

The Cardiac Cath personnel will provide complete peri-procedure education for noninvasive procedures, including post-procedural phase, to all patients without discrimination. The education provided is not limited to procedure intervention, but also embraces the psychological, social and spiritual dimensions of the patients and their family.


The basic staffing plan for the procedure room is one Registered Nurse, one Scrub Personnel and one Monitor Personnel. In cases where moderate sedation is administered, the policy, procedure and standards related to moderate sedation are followed. The Cardiac Cath Laboratory recovery area is staffed with licensed personnel.

Qualifications of staff

Cardiac Cath Laboratory staff members maintain current BCLS certification, with ACLS certification required. All Registered nurses and technologists maintain a current state license. ACLS is required for all staff. An ongoing program of in-service education and periodic clinical skills evaluation for all staff members is maintained to ensure that the quality of care provided is kept current with the developments in the medical, nursing, anesthesia and infection control fields.

Standards of practice and methods used to meet patient care needs

The American College of Cardiology (ACC), ASPAN, Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI), the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Public Health Department standards are references used in the formulation and review of policies, procedures and standards of practice in the Cardiac Cath Laboratory Services, as well as collaborative input from the knowledge and expertise of the Cardiac Cath Laboratory staff. To assist in meeting patient care needs, support is readily available from all equipment and instrument manufacturers.