Support for Michigan TAVR is provided by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network as part of the BCBSM Value Partnerships program*.

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The Michigan TAVR Project is a collaboration between the Michigan Society of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgeons (MSTCVS) and Blue Cross Blue Shield Cardiovascular Consortium (BMC2). Michigan TAVR is a quality improvement project designed to improve quality of care and patient outcomes in patients who undergo a percutaneous valve replacement procedure.

Transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) is a procedure for select patients with severe symptomatic aortic stenosis (narrowing of the aortic valve opening) who are not candidates for traditional open chest surgery or are high-risk operable candidates. Somewhat similar to a stent placed in an artery, the TAVR approach delivers a fully collapsible replacement valve to the valve site through a catheter. Once the new valve is expanded, it pushes the old valve leaflets out of the way and the tissue in the replacement valve takes over the job of regulating blood flow. Although relatively new, TAVR can be an effective option to improve quality of life in patients who otherwise have limited choices for repair of their aortic valve. Most people who have this procedure are often older adults with other medical conditions that make this procedure a better option for them.

*Although Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Michigan TAVR work collaboratively, the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints of BCBSM or any of its employees.