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Helping get patients to the right care

Some patients, whose hearts aren't strong enough to efficiently pump blood throughout their body, may need a ventricular assist device (VAD) implant. This life-saving device pumps blood from the lower chambers of the heart to the body. It doesn't replace the heart, but helps its function.

Organizations covering the cost of VAD procedures and post-implant device maintenance face high and dynamically changing expenses.1 However, with our VAD program, Optum can help control cost variation and help ensure patients get the right care.

The number of annual VAD procedures is projected to have increased 33 percent between 2011 and 2015 with the majority of growth now being driven by destination therapy.

Optum's VAD Program

The Optum VAD program identifies and qualifies leading VAD centers, over 60 nationwide, and provides access to quality providers for VAD implantation as well as post-surgical maintenance.

Our VAD program has developed an innovative solution that focuses on superior management and improves outcomes by:

  • Identifying, qualifying and contracting with a broad VAD network
  • Controlling cost variation and mitigating financial risk through utilization of and emphasis on strategic contracting VAD network facilities and VAD equipment vendors.

Commercial VAD Centers of Excellence Network

Medicare VAD Centers of Excellence Network

Medicaid VAD Centers of Excellence Network



1. Miller L, et al. Cost of ventricular assist devices: Can we afford the progress? Circulation. 2013;127:743-748. doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.112.139824
2. Lichtman J, Prier W.  LVAD Market. Oppenheimer. Published July 15, 2015. Accessed October 27, 2015.