ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – A new study finds going to the right hospital for a heart attack could add a year to your life.

Using Medicare records, researchers found that roughly 17 years after a heart attack, average life expectancy was 9 to 14 months longer for patients who had been treated at hospitals that do best on widely used quality measures than for those treated at low-rated ones.

SLU Care cardiologist Dr. Michael Lim at SSM Health SLU Hospital says “There are some differences on how hospitals take care of patients with heart attacks that potentially translates to how long people live after their heart attack.”

Lim adds local hospitals are working together to try to improve cardiac care in all hospitals in the region.

“I don’t think hospital should compete…we ought to do the best possible job we can and share our opportunities where we can get better with each other so we can help each other improve,” he says.

For the past five years, local hospitals have teamed up with the American Heart Association to share their best practices in a program called Mission Life Line.

(TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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