Cardiovascular In-Patient Services is comprised of several patient care areas that include both medical and surgical cardiac patient populations.

Patient care areas include:

  • Four 24-26 bed Cardiovascular Patient Care Units (located on B9E, C10, N10 and B10E)
  • Two 12-bed Intensive Care Units (located on B9I and B10I)
  • Two 3-bed Step-down Units (located within B9E & B10E)
  • An 8-bed Angioplasty Recovery Suite (located within N10)

Within this cardiovascular acute care setting exists such subspecialties as:

  • Electrophysiology
  • Congestive Heart Failure
  • Chest Pain Center
  • Acute Coronary Syndrome
  • Open Heart Surgery
Cardiovascular In-Patient Services Leadership Team
Cardiovascular In-Patient Services Leadership Team
The opportunities for clinical excellence, research, professional growth and development are limitless. This dynamic environment offering cutting-edge technology with the application of evidenced-based clinical practice provides for life-long learning.
The combination of Shared Governance and a strong Collaborative Practice Model with our physician partners, as well as a multidisciplinary team approach for quality patient care are key foundations of the Cardiovascular Service. 

Karen Habig, RN, MS
Nurse Director, Cardiovascular Inpatient Services


Center 10 (Telemetry Inpatient Unit)

Welcome to Center 10 (C10).  First, ask yourself why you choose a career in Nursing and if your answer is something like:  "I was looking for a job where I could live my passion for providing patient care in a challenging, state of the art, yet compassionate atmosphere", then look no further; you belong on C10.  Center 10 is Hartford Hospital's Congestive Heart Failure Nursing unit.  Our Nurses are amongst the most knowledgeable and dedicated of any who care for chronically ill patients.  chronic congestive heart failure (CHG) ranks among the most prevalent and serious of cardiac problems.  It is the leading cause of hospital admissions for persons 65 and older.  As devastating as this disease can be, new therapies that provide hope are emerging almost everyday.  As our knowledge of CHF expands so does our ability to alleviate some of the suffering associated with this illness.  However our inability to prevent the inevitable slow progression of the disease and eventual demise of the patient remains a challenge.  This makes caring for this population among the most challenging assignments a Nurse will ever accept.  In one room you may be monitoring vasoactive medication drips that help to restore a person's functional capacity, wile in another room you may hold a patient's hand as you help him and his family understand that aggressive therapies will no longer be helpful.  Providing care to Congestive Heart Failure patients means you will become an expert at cardiac monitoring, assessment and pharmacology.  You will also become an expert at therapeutic communication, patient education, and the consideration of palliative care.

Center 10 (Telemetry Inpatient Unit) Staff
Center 10 (Telemetry Inpatient Unit) Staff

To help you on your way we will provide you with a thorough orientation, paring you with an experienced preceptor.  You will attend our Cardiology CORE lecture series.  You will learn arrhythmia interpretation and treatment.  And the spectrum of classes available to you for ongoing education and professional growth will inspire you.  through our Shared Governance System, you will have opportunities to contribute to significant clinical initiatives and decision-making processes that affect your practice and work environment.  You will work with Patient Care Assistants equally dedicated to the compassionate care required of this unique patient population.  You will collaborate with Physicians, Nurse Practitioners and Physician's Assistants who value your input regarding the care of their patients.  Cardiology Nurse Educators and a Clinical Nurse Specialist re available to support you.  You will be able to experience professional nursing practice on a unit dedicated to excellence at the bedside.

As the manager of C10, I promote collaboration between all categories of healthcare providers.  Teamwork, respect and on-going communication are essential to providing service excellence to all our customers regardless of their age, title, education or cultural background.  I value critical thinking and the professional growth of all my staff members.  If you value nursing care the way I do, then come visit my unit.  Consider shadowing one of the C10 nurses for  day and experience what a wonderful career opportunity this could be for you.  I look forward to speaking with you.

Thank you.
Ann Vale, RN, MSN, Nurse Manager Center 10


Bliss 10 East (Adult Telemetry Unit and Cardiac Step Down)

Welcome to Bliss 10 East (B10E).  B10E is a Nursing unit with 24 Telemetry beds and 3 Step-down beds.  We specialize in the care of patients with complex cardiac arrhythmias.  Many of our patients admit to our unit to have a cardiac diagnostic work-up for syncope, bradycardias or various types of tachycardias.  Some have already had their work-up and are here to have device placement; such as a pacemaker, AICD or Bi-ventricular pacemaker. We work together with our Cardiologists and Electrophysiologists to diagnose and treat complex arrhythmia disorders.  B10E partners with many physician specialties to care for the complex medical patient that has a cardiac arrhythmia.  Our Nurses are highly trained professionals whose critical thinking skills are tested everyday as they prevent, detect and treat a variety of cardiac emergencies.
The care of our patients is challenging so we emphasize a team approach. The Patient Care Assistants and the Patient Administrative Assistants (who also serve as Monitor Technicians) are as important to the care of patients as are the Nurses and Physicians.  Belief in patient-centered care and collegial partnerships together produce optimal patient outcomes.

Bliss 10 East (Adult Telemetry Unit and Cardiac Step Down) Staff
Bliss 10 East (Adult Telemetry Unit and Cardiac Step Down) Staff
Nurses who work on this unit are supported by a team of Care Coordinators, Pharmacists, Nutritionists and Respiratory and Physical Therapists. Nurse Educators, a Clinical Nurse Specialist and Clinical leaders help to orient new nurses to the service.  Nurses who work on this unit are given a detailed orientation that includes Arrhythmia classes, Cardiovascular CORE classes and mentorship (please see the CV Nursing Education section of this internet site).  We encourage and support our Nurses to become ACLS certified. 
The Nurse Manager for B10E is Valerie Neary, RN, MSN, BLS, ACLS, TNCC.  She leads a culturally diverse team that best meets the needs of a culturally diverse patient population.  We are interested in individuals who can see the strength in themselves and others.  Work together with our team to achieve excellence in the delivery of patient care.


Bliss 9 I (Cardiothoracic ICU)

Welcome to the Bliss 9 ICU. B9I is a 12-bed Cardiothoracic ICU that cares for cardiac surgery patients, including heart transplants as well as general and surgical patients. The staff of B9I provide care for critically ill patients requiring multiple technologies or advanced life support including: hemodynamic monitoring, Continuous veno-venous hemofiltration (CVVH), Intra Aortic Balloon pump (IABP), Ventricular Assist Devices (VAD), Temporary Pacing, Nitric Oxide (NO), and multiple drug therapies.

Bliss 9 I (Cardiothoracic ICU) Staff
Bliss 9 I (Cardiothoracic ICU) Staff
B9I is unique such that the provision of daily care to patients including performing invasive procedures and laboratory tests is under the supervision of the attending intensivist and in communication with the Cardiothoracic Surgeon and Attending cardiologist.
Bliss 9I is committed to creating an innovative patient centered delivery system that continuously improves quality care. The members of the Bliss 9I team are active participants in the shared governance model as well as national quality improvement initiatives such as Transformation of the Intensive Care Unit.
The Nurse Manger for B9I is Michele Kolios, RN, MS.

Bliss 9 East (Cardiothoracic Surgical Telemetry Unit and Step Down)

Welcome to Bliss 9 East (B9E).   B9E is a 24-bed post-op cardiac surgery unit along with a 3 bed step-down unit.  The majority of the B9E patient population consists of post-op cardiac surgery patients (post CABG, Valve repair or replacement, Adult congenital heart defect repair, VAD bridge to Transplant, Great vessel repairs and MAZE procedures).  Our step-down patients are complex post-cardiac surgery patients that need closer monitoring and an increased level of care.  Nursing orientation for this unit can be between 6–9 weeks long and includes the Hartford Hospital Cardiology CORE classes, Arrhythmia recognition training and personal mentoring by an experienced preceptor.  Patient care is supported by Nurse Practitioners, Physician Assistants, Nurse Educators and a Clinical Nurse Specialist.

Bliss 9 East (Cardiothoracic Surgical Telemetry Unit and Step Down) Staff
Bliss 9 East (Cardiothoracic Surgical Telemetry Unit and Step Down) Staff
Our patients have complex and challenging needs, so we’re looking for Nurses who flourish in this dynamic, continuous learning environment.  Our Nurses are committed to high clinical standards of practice, centered around the patient and family’s needs.
As their Manager, I encourage ongoing education, growth, teamwork, service excellence and active participation in the shared governance structure of the hospital.  This means all levels of staff have a voice in decisions that affect their work environment and their clinical practice.  We achieve the best patient outcomes when the workers closest to the patient are involved in the progressive care and problem solving processes.
We were the first in-patient surgical care unit to go-live with our new computerized provider order entry system and the corresponding electronic medication administration record. These computer systems facilitate communication amongst all healthcare workers and also help to expedite interdepartmental patient care orders. It enhances accuracy, timeliness and clarity of pharmaceutical orders and eliminates the lag time of transcription to manual medication and treatment kardexes.  Our Nurses have embraced this system and have used it to improved many aspects of patient care.
If you are looking for a fast-paced, innovative place to practice, look no further. Come visit us or shadow a B9E Nurse for a day. If you are nursing student, consider looking into our Nurse-externship programs.  Consider this your personal invitation.  My name is Anne Cronin and I hope to meet you soon.
Thank you!
Ann Cronin, RN, BSN, Nurse Manger for B9E 

Bliss 10 I (Cardiac ICU)

Welcome to the Bliss 10 ICU. B10I is a 12-Bed Intensive Care Unit, with a primary focus on caring for Cardiac Patients. Our patient population consists of but is not limited to those individuals with compromised cardiac systems. This population ranges in complexity, from the patient with an uncomplicated myocardial infarction to those with end stage heart disease complicated by multi system organ failure.

Bliss 10 I (Cardiac ICU) Staff
Bliss 10 I (Cardiac ICU) Staff
Our nurses are skilled at caring for patients with a multitude of disease processes, includes those with: arrhythmia’s, cardiogenic shock, congestive heart failure, cardiomyopathy, acute myocardial infarction, cardiac arrest, and post-angioplasty. We provide care to patients who are medically compromised, which includes those patients with medical complications secondary to poorly functioning cardiovascular systems as well as patients whose conditions are non-cardiac in nature. We utilize state of the art technology including intra-aortic balloon pumping, continuous veno-venous hemodialysis, hemodynamic monitoring (both invasive and non-invasive), titration of vasoactive drugs and transvenous pacemakers.
Our nurses are skilled at meeting both the physiological as well as psychosocial needs of the patient and family. Education for the patient and their families is extremely important to us, as are their unique cultural and spiritual needs. We have a spirituality group that convenes to provide holistic and spiritual opportunities for patients and families. B10I has formed a group that provides education to our staff about the different spiritual, and culture needs of our diverse clientele. We are also involved in the research, introduction and continued success of the integrative therapies program within our unit, and throughout the hospital.
It is our philosophy to encourage and support the shared governance model, both within our cluster and hospital wide. Members of our staff actively participate in the councils, research projects, and educational efforts. Our Education Council provides regular inservices, which often include guest speakers and reviews of technology and / or literature regarding best practice. Our Performance Improvement Council reviews results from various audits, which allow us to continually improve our practice. Our Operations Council assists in our peer review process and recruitment and retention strategies. We are active participants of the Transformational ICU VHA project and have brought forth many successful and valuable changes to the manner in which our care is delivered. In participating in this project we are aiming to incorporate the most current and most effective evidence based practice into our care. This allows for our teams to share information and ideas within our units, as well as with other hospitals across the country. Our unit has been actively involved in the Acute Coronary Syndrome Team. The accomplishments of our Chest Pain Center have been recognized throughout the hospital, and by accreditation awarded by the Society of Chest Pain Centers. B10I has also been recognized by the American Association of Critical Care Nurses with the BEACON Award. The BEACON award is given to those ICUs that provide critical care at its highest level.
Patient and family satisfaction is of utmost importance to our team, as is the satisfaction of all of those who are employed here or who enter through our doors. Bliss 10 I continues to have high scores on patient satisfaction surveys. Physician satisfaction is important to our team and we have taken great effort to ensure that our relationships with the house staff that work with us are educational, productive and collaborative in nature. Satisfaction of our staff is maintained in a variety of ways. We have a supportive team that works well together and cares about one another. Self-scheduling allows for individual needs to be met and enhances satisfaction. Advanced education in a variety of forms is supported and encouraged. Our leadership team of managers, educators and a Clinical Nurse Specialist provides a multitude of opportunities for our team members to have autonomy, confidence, advancement and creativity.
The Nurse Manger for B10I is Michele Kolios, RN, MS.

North 10 (Medical Cardiac Unit and Angioplasty Suite)

Welcome to North 10 (N10). The Nursing staff members of N10 are specialists in the care of patients with suspected or confirmed myocardial infarctions or acute coronary syndrome.  They are highly trained in the early recognition of cardiac complications and highly skilled in the use of cardiac diagnostic and monitoring equipment.  Our unit has recently been awarded full accreditation as a Chest Pain Center by the Society of Chest Pain Centers. The majority of the patients we care for, are people who are in various stages of a Cardiac diagnostic work-up, including those who are immediately post a percutaneous cardiac interventional procedure.

North 10 (Medical Cardiac Unit and Angioplasty Suite) Staff
North 10 (Medical Cardiac Unit and Angioplasty Suite) Staff
Our Nurses are mentored to respond quickly to emergent situations and to recognize subtle changes in a patient’s condition to promote optimal patient outcomes.  We provide a thorough orientation and continuing educational support to all our Nurses.  Our PCAs (Patient Care Assistants) are an essential part of the team and work closely with the Nurses.  We also provide a full orientation for our PCAs and find that many of them are inspired to go back to school and become Nurses themselves.

Chest Pain Center Earns Accreditation

The Cardiology and Emergency Departments are pleased to announce that Hartford Hospital’s Chest Pain Center has been awarded accreditation by the Society of Chest Pain Centers, only the second center in Connecticut (the other is Bridgeport) to be so accredited and the 225th in the nation. Accreditation is granted after successfully meeting a set of stringent criteria and completion of on-site evaluations by a review team. Key areas of expertise include:

  • ED integration with the local emergency medical system
  • Rapid assessment, diagnosis and treatment of patients
  • Effective treatment for patients at low risk for acute coronary syndrome and no clear cause of their symptoms
  • Demonstrated full spectrum of care for high-risk ACS patient population

The people most directly responsible for this achievement deserve our thanks: Karen Habig, RN, MS; Ray McKay, MD; A. J. Smally, MD; and Marcin Dada, M.D.

We strive to achieve innovative practice standards that are up-to-date and based on solid research and clinical evidence. Our Nurses, Physicians, Nurse Practitioners and Physician’s Assistants work collaboratively to develop these practice standards.  Because we have these practice standards and have developed so many clinical protocols, our Nurses enjoy a high degree of professional autonomy.  A good example of this is our new Chest Pain Center, which was designed to provide rapid assessment of patients with Chest Pain on a Nursing unit dedicated to the differential diagnosis of Chest pain.  The Nurses and Physicians collaboratively developed a Chest Pain Protocol, which allows the Nurses to begin appropriate medications and interventions immediately upon suspicion of cardiac related chest pain.
As the manager of N10, I encourage teamwork and respect for all persons regardless of their title, education or cultural background.  I value progressive thinking and promote personal and professional growth for all my staff members. If you think this type of Nursing is for you, then come visit us for a day.  Shadow one of our Nurses for a day and experience what a challenging and rewarding career opportunity this could be for you.
I look forward to meeting you.
Thank you,
The Nurse Manger for N10 is Eric Johansen.