Published on October 01, 2021

Essentia Health-St. Mary’s Medical Center earns national recognition for efforts to improve stroke treatment

Essentia Health-St. Mary’s Medical Center is proud to receive the Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Quality Achievement Award from the American Heart Association (AHA) for our commitment to prioritizing innovative and high-quality care for stroke patients.

Stroke is the No. 5 cause of death and a leading cause of adult disability in the U.S. On average, someone in the U.S. suffers a stroke every 40 seconds, and nearly 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year. Early stroke detection and treatment are key to improving survival, minimizing disability and speeding recovery times.

Essentia’s expert stroke care features the only interventional and vascular neurology team in the region.

“It’s critically important to call 911 and get to the hospital as soon as possible if you or a loved one is having a stroke,” said Dr. Vikram Jadhav, an interventional neurologist at Essentia. “Time is brain. When it comes to stroke treatment, every minute counts. Remember, stroke symptoms occur suddenly and are serious, so BEFAST (which stands for observing balance, eyes, face, arms, speech and time to spot a stroke).”

Each year, program participants apply for the award recognition by demonstrating how their organization has committed to providing quality care for stroke patients. In addition to following treatment guidelines, participants also provide education to patients to help them manage their health and rehabilitation once at home.

“We are pleased to recognize St. Mary’s Medical Center for its commitment to stroke care,” said Lee H. Schwamm, MD, national chairperson of the Quality Oversight Committee and Executive Vice Chair of Neurology, Director of Acute Stroke Services, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston. “Research has shown that hospitals adhering to clinical measures through the Get With The Guidelines quality-improvement initiative can often see fewer readmissions and lower mortality rates.”

Additionally, St. Mary’s received high honors in the following areas:

  • The AHA’s Target: StrokeSM Honor Roll Elite Therapy award. To qualify for this recognition, hospitals must meet quality measures developed to reduce the time between the patient’s arrival at the hospital and administration of a clot-busting medication to treat ischemic stroke.
  • The AHA’s Target: StrokeSM Honor Roll Advanced Therapy award. For this award, hospitals successfully treated at least 50% of qualified stroke patients within 90 minutes of arriving directly to their facility and within 60 minutes of arriving by EMS transport with a thrombectomy procedure.
  • And the Association’s Target: Type 2 Diabetes Honor Roll award. To qualify for this recognition, hospitals must meet quality measures developed with more than 90% of compliance for 12 consecutive months for the “Overall Diabetes Cardiovascular Initiative Composite Score.”

St. Mary’s also met specific scientific guidelines as a Joint Commission-certified Thrombectomy-Capable Stroke Center featuring a comprehensive system for rapid diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients. St. Mary’s is the only certified Joint Commission Thrombectomy-Capable Stroke Center in the region.

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