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Mount St. Mary's receives Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award for stroke care

by jmaloni

Press release

Fri, May 3rd 2013 07:00 am

Award demonstrates Mount St. Mary's commitment to quality care for stroke patients

Mount St. Mary's Hospital has received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association's Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award. The award recognizes Mount St. Mary's commitment and success in implementing excellent care for stroke patients, according to evidence-based guidelines. Mount St. Mary's is a state-designated stroke center.

To receive the award, Mount St. Mary's achieved adherence to all Get With The Guidelines-Stroke quality achievement indicators for two or more consecutive 12-month intervals, and met compliance with six of 10 Get With The Guidelines-Stroke quality measures, which are reporting initiatives to measure quality of care. These measures include aggressive use of medications to reduce the potential for blood clots, such as antithrombotics, anticoagulation therapy, deep vein thrombosis prophylaxis, as well as cholesterol-reducing drugs and smoking cessation, all aimed at reducing death and disability and improving the lives of stroke patients.

"With a stroke, time lost is brain lost, and the Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award demonstrates Mount St. Mary's commitment to being one of the top hospitals in the country for providing aggressive, proven stroke care," said hospital President and CEO Judith A. Maness. "We will continue with our focus on providing evidence-based care, i.e., care that has been shown in scientific literature to quickly and efficiently treat stroke patients with proven protocols."

Maness credited the leadership of Dr. Gregory Sambuchi, chief of neurology and director of the hospital's stroke care program, and experienced former critical care nurses Rosanne Schiavi and Linda Stevens for leading the hospital's efforts.

"Mount St. Mary's is to be commended for its commitment to implementing standards of care and protocols for treating stroke patients," said Lee H. Schwamm, M.D., chair of the Get With The Guidelines national steering committee and director of the TeleStroke and acute stroke services at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. "The full implementation of acute care and secondary prevention recommendations and guidelines is a critical step in saving the lives and improving outcomes of stroke patients."

In addition to the Get With The Guideline-Stroke award, Mount St. Mary's has also been recognized as a recipient of the association's Target: Stroke Honor Roll, for improving stroke care. Over the past quarter, at least 50 percent of the hospital's eligible ischemic stroke patients have received the clot-busting drug known as tissue plasminogen activator, or tPA, within 60 minutes of arriving at the hospital (known as "door-to-needle" time). A thrombolytic, or clot-busting agent, tPA is the only drug approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the urgent treatment of ischemic stroke. If given intravenously in the first three hours after the start of stroke symptoms, tPA has been shown to significantly reverse the effects of stroke and reduce permanent disability.

Get With The Guidelines-Stroke uses the "teachable moment," the time soon after a patient has had a stroke, when they are most likely to listen to and follow their health care professionals' guidance. Studies demonstrate that patients who are taught how to manage their risk factors while still in the hospital reduce their risk of a second heart attack or stroke.

Through Get With The Guidelines-Stroke, customized patient education materials are made available at the point of discharge, based on patients' individual risk profiles. The take-away materials are written in an easy-to-understand format and are available in English and Spanish. In addition, the Get With The Guidelines patient management tool gives health care providers access to up-to-date cardiovascular and stroke science at the point of care.

According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, stroke is one of the leading causes of death and serious, long-term disability in the U.S. On average, someone suffers a stroke every 40 seconds; someone dies of a stroke every four minutes; and 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year.

Mount St. Mary's Hospital and Health Center, a member of Ascension Health, is a 175-bed community hospital in Lewiston. Mount St. Mary's team of health care professionals includes 1,250 employees, more than 200 physicians and 250 volunteers, working with the latest technology, the most current programming, and the very best of care. Other facilities include the 250-bed Our Lady of Peace Rehabilitation and Nursing Care Residence, the Center for Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation, and the Neighborhood Health Center.

For more information, visit http://www.msmh.org.

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