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Rome Health earns spine surgery distinction

Posted 2/7/23

Excellus BlueCross BlueShield has selected Rome Health as a Blue Distinction Center for Spine Surgery, part of the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program.

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Rome Health earns spine surgery distinction


ROME — Excellus BlueCross BlueShield has selected Rome Health as a Blue Distinction Center for Spine Surgery, part of the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program.

Blue Distinction Centers are nationally designated health care facilities that show a commitment to delivering high-quality patient safety and better health outcomes, based on objective measures that were developed with input from the medical community and leading accreditation and quality organizations.

Facilities designated as Blue Distinction Centers for Spine Surgery demonstrate expertise in cervical and lumbar fusion, cervical laminectomy and lumbar laminectomy/discectomy procedures, resulting in fewer patient complications and re-admissions compared to other hospitals. All designated facilities must maintain national accreditation.

“Rome Memorial Hospital is proud to be recognized by Excellus BlueCross BlueShield for meeting the robust selection criteria for spine surgery set by the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program,” said Rome Health President/CEO AnneMarie W. Czyz. “Dr. Nicholas Qandah, medical director of Rome Health’s Neurospine program, along with the Neurospine Team continue to provide our community with high quality care and excellent patient outcomes.”

Dr. Qandah said Rome Health strives to deliver the highest level of excellence in neurospine care in this region.

“Our commitment to quality and state-of-the-art technology provides patients with incredible outcomes so they can get back to the things that they enjoy,” Qandah said.

Spinal surgeries are one of the most frequent types of elective surgeries in the U.S. According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality,(AHRQ), there were more than 463,000 spinal fusion operations conducted in the U.S. in 2014, a procedure commonly done in the lumbar region of the lower back to treat back pain. Hospital costs for a fusion procedure average $28,900, according to AHRQ.

“Rome Memorial Hospital is well prepared to grow our neurospine program with the support of an interdisciplinary team that is committed to delivering optimal care, here,” said Czyz. “Our leadership and the entire team’s overarching commitment to safety are the strengths of our program. As Director of Rome Memorial Hospital’s Neurospine Program, Dr. Qandah, along with the Neurospine team, are excited to be part of this tremendous growth, and proud to be able to deliver this high quality care to our patients.”

The Blue Distinction Specialty Care program helps patients find quality 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. Research for many of these programs shows that, compared to other providers, those designated as Blue Distinction Centers demonstrate high-quality and improved outcomes for patients.

“Congratulations to Rome Memorial Hospital on achieving this important quality recognition,” said Eve Van de Wal, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield Utica regional president. “The Blue Distinction designation is an important quality and transparency tool to help members make informed decisions about their health care.”

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


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