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CMC Receives Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award

Award Demonstrates CMC’s Commitment to Quality Care for Stroke Patients
June 17, 2015—Catholic Medical Center has received the Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association. This recognition reflects CMC’s commitment and success in ensuring stroke patients receive the most appropriate and up-to-date treatment according to nationally-recognized, research-based guidelines based on the latest scientific evidence. 

“With a stroke, time lost is brain lost, and this award demonstrates our commitment to ensuring patients receive care based on nationally-respected clinical guidelines,” said Dr. Louis Fink, medical director of the New England Heart and Vascular Institute at CMC.

CMC offers the gold standard of care through TeleStroke, a Dartmouth-Hitchcock program in collaboration with Mayo Clinic. TeleStroke uses videoconferencing technology allowing vascular neurologists at a distance to communicate instantaneously with CMC medical staff. Through this digital connection, vascular neurologists examine the CMC patient, interpret brain images, confirm the diagnosis, and provide recommendations about life-altering treatment options, just as if they were at the bedside. To support ongoing stroke recovery, CMC has a neurohospitalist on staff who cares solely for neurology patients staying at the hospital. 

“At CMC we see more strokes than most hospitals and our outcomes surpass national standards,” said Kendra Cline, RN, MSN, stroke program coordinator at CMC. “Our goal is to reduce risks of disability and increase clinical outcomes with better care. From the minute people reach our door to long after they are sent home, we offer high-level healing support for patients and their families.”

To receive the Gold Plus Quality Achievement award, CMC demonstrated compliance with the achievement indicators for 24 months. These quality measures are designed to help hospital teams provide the most up-to-date, evidence-based guidelines with the goal of speeding recovery and reducing death and disability for stroke patients. They focus on appropriate use of guideline-based care for stroke patients, including aggressive use of medications such as clot-busting and anti-clotting drugs, blood thinners and cholesterol-reducing drugs, preventive action for deep vein thrombosis and smoking cessation counseling.

For providers, Get With The Guidelines-Stroke offers quality-improvement measures, discharge protocols, standing orders and other measurement tools. Providing hospitals with resources and information that make it easier to follow treatment guidelines can help save lives and ultimately reduce overall healthcare costs by lowering readmission rates for stroke patients.
For patients, Get With The Guidelines-Stroke uses the “teachable moment” after a patient has had a stroke to help people learn how to manage their risk factors and recognize the “F.A.S.T.” warning signs of a stroke: 

We are pleased to recognize Catholic Medical Center for their commitment to stroke care,” said Deepak L. Bhatt, MD, MPH, national chairman of the Get With The Guidelines steering committee. “Studies have shown that hospitals that consistently follow Get With The Guidelines quality improvement measures can reduce length of stay and 30-day readmission rates and reduce disparities in care.

According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, stroke is the fifth leading cause of adult death and 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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