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St. John's Episcopal Hospital Receive AHA Gold Stroke Quality Achievement Award

Posted on December 13, 2014

FAR ROCKAWAY, NY — St. John’s Episcopal Hospital has received the Get With The Guidelines®–Stroke GoldPlusQualityAchievement Award from the American Heart Association. The award recognizes the hospital’s commitment and success in implementing a higher standard of care by ensuring that stroke patients receive treatment according to nationally accepted guidelines.

Previously, St. John’s Episcopal Hospital earned a silver achievement award, so this year’s silver award represents a significant achievement and recognition of the Hospital’s excellence and improvement.

The Get With The Guidelines–Stroke helps St. John’s Episcopal Hospital staff develop and implement acute and secondary prevention guideline processes to improve patient care and outcomes. “The program provides hospitals with a web-based patient management tool, best practice discharge protocols and standing orders, along with a robust registry and real-time benchmarking capabilities to track performance,” says Natalie Schwartz, MD, Senior Vice President, Quality Management at St. John’s. “The quick and efficient use of guideline procedures can improve the quality of care for stroke patients and may reduce disability and save lives,” she adds. “

Recent studies show that patients treated in hospitals participating in the American Heart Association’s Get With The Guidelines-Stroke program receive a higher quality of care and may experience better outcomes,” 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, Mass. “The St. John’s team is to be commended for their commitment to improving the care of their patients.”

Following Get With The Guidelines-Stroke treatment guidelines, patients are started on aggressive risk-reduction therapies including the use of medications such as tPA, antithrombotics and anticoagulation therapy, along with cholesterol reducing drugs and smoking cessation counseling. These are all aimed at reducing death and disability and improving the lives of stroke patients. Hospitals must adhere to these measures at a set level for a designated period of time to be eligible for the achievement awards.

“St. John’s is dedicated to making our care for stroke patients among the best in the country. The American Heart Association’s Get With The Guidelines–Stroke program helps us to accomplish this goal,” said Dr. Schwartz. “This recognition demonstrates that we are on the right track and we’re very proud of our team.”

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 United States. 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.

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