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St. Joseph's Hospital Receives Stroke Quality Achievement Award
06/01/2011

Award demonstrates St. Joseph's Hospital's commitment to quality care for stroke patients 


TAMPA, FL (May 24, 2011) - St. Joseph's Hospital in Tampa has received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association's Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award.  The award recognizes St. Joseph's Hospital's commitment and success in implementing excellent care for stroke patients, according to evidence-based guidelines.


To receive the award, St. Joseph's 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.


"At St. Joseph's, we say "time is brain," and the Get With The Guidelines - Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award proves that our hospital is committed to being one of the top hospitals in the country for providing high-quality, cutting edge  stroke care," said St. Joseph's Interventional Neuroradiologist Matthew Berlet, M.D. 


"St. Joseph's Hospital in Tampa 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." 


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 healthcare 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 healthcare providers access to up-to-date cardiovascular and stroke science at the point of care. 


"This distinction recognizes that St. Joseph's Hospital has the resources to provide the best treatments for stroke," said Pam D'Amore, director of St. Joseph's Hospital's Heart Institute.  "The stroke team at St. Joseph's Hospital has the specialized staff and cutting-edge technology to provide our patients with a better chance of recovery with minimal disability."


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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