JACKSON, Miss. – The University Comprehensive Stroke Center at the University of Mississippi Medical Center has received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award. The award recognizes UMMC’s commitment and success in implementing excellent care for stroke patients, according to evidence-based guidelines.
To receive the award, the stroke center achieved of 85 percent or higher adherence to all Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Quality Achievement indicators for two or more consecutive 12-month intervals and achieved 75 percent or higher 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, such as tPA, antithrombotics, anticoagulation therapy, DVT prophylaxis, cholesterol reducing drugs and smoking cessation, all aimed at reducing death and disability and improving the lives of stroke patients.
“This award gives us recognition for the intense teamwork from the members of our Comprehensive Stroke Center, which is required for excellent patient care,” said Dr. Rebecca Sugg, director of the stroke center and an interventional vascular neurologist.
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.
“UMMC is to be commended for its commitment to implementing standards of care and protocols for treating stroke patients,” said Dr. Lee H. Schwamm, 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.”
According to the AHA/ASA, 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.