Queens, NY – Elmhurst Hospital Center has received two significant recognitions from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association (AHA/ASA) for the successful implementation of higher standards of stroke care, aimed at reducing death and disability, and improving the lives of stroke patients. Presented to the hospital for the third consecutive year, the Gold Plus Performance Achievement Award is an advanced level of recognition that acknowledges hospitals for their compliance with the Get With The Guidelines® nationally accepted standards and quality measures.
In addition, Elmhurst Hospital Center is included in the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s “Honor Roll” for timely administration of clot-busting (thrombolytic) therapy within 60 minutes of a patient’s arrival to the hospital. A thrombolytic, or clot busting agent, when administered in a timely manner is the best available treatment for ischemic stroke. If given intravenously in the first three hours after the start of stroke symptoms, it has been shown to significantly reverse the effects of stroke and reduce permanent disability.
“With a stroke, time lost is brain lost, and the Get With The Guidelines–Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award demonstrates EHC’scommitment to being one of the top hospitals in the country for providing aggressive, proven stroke care,” said Chris Constantino, Executive Director of EHC.
“ EHC 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.”
The AHA/ASA Get With the Guidelines® protocol uses the “teachable moment” – the time soon after a patient has had a stroke and is most likely to listen to and follow their healthcare professionals’ guidance – to teach patients how to manage their risk factors. Studies demonstrate that patients who are taught how to manage their risk factors while still in the hospital are able to reduce their risk of a second heart attack or stroke.
The Gold Plus Performance Achievement Award is the highest level of recognition that allows hospitals to be acknowledged for their compliance with the AHA/ASA quality measures and sustained adherence to specific evidence-based guidelines over a period of two consecutive years.
According to the American Heart Association, the number of acute ischemic stroke patients eligible for treatment is expected to grow over the next decade due to increasing stroke incidence and a large aging population. Other statistics indicate that 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.