Good Samaritan Receives Get With The Guidelines - Stroke Bronze Quality Achievement Award

The American Heart Association recently recognized Good Samaritan’s commitment to quality stroke care. The hospital has received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines® – Stroke Bronze Quality Achievement Award. The award recognizes the hospital’s commitment to ensuring stroke patients receive the most appropriate treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines based on the latest scientific evidence.

In the spring of 2016, Good Samaritan observed the chance to strengthen its knowledge and quality of patient care for treating patients who had suffered from a stroke. “We had an opportunity to heighten the understanding of stroke and ensure our patients were receiving excellent health care,” said Amanda Allen, Stroke Program Coordinator. After gathering data and focusing on the hospital’s stroke care, it was decided to implement evidence-based practices and guidelines to better treat patients. Good Samaritan embarked on the journey in becoming a Joint Commission-certified Primary Stroke Care Center. The organization is now gaining an improved understanding of risk factors for stroke, signs/symptoms of stroke, and treatment paths for stroke patients.

By incorporating these guidelines into patient care; Good Samaritan participates in annual data reporting. This information is collected and reviewed by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, which recognizes hospitals for their success in using the guidelines to improve quality of care for patients. There are three levels of recognition: Bronze – quality performance of 90 consecutive days, Silver – performance of 12 consecutive months, and Gold – performance of 24 consecutive months or more. The Bronze award Good Samaritan received signifies the determination and hard work employees have put into bettering the quality of patient care.

Good Samaritan earned the award by meeting specific quality achievement measures for the diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients at a set level for a designated period. These measures include evaluation of the proper use of medications and other stroke treatments aligned with the most up-to-date, evidence-based guidelines, with the goal of speeding recovery and reducing death and disability for stroke patients. Before discharge, patients should also receive education on managing their health, get a follow-up visit scheduled, as well as other care transition interventions.

“We are pleased to recognize Good Samaritan for their commitment to stroke care,” said Eric E. Smith, M.D., national chairman of the Get With The Guidelines Steering Committee and an associate professor of neurology at the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada. “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.”

According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, stroke is the No. 5 cause of death and a leading cause of adult disability in the United States. 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.

The goal of the Stroke Program at Good Samaritan is to do what is best for patients. By educating the community, the Stroke Program hopes to heighten the awareness of the risk factors for stroke, signs/symptoms of stroke, and how to call 911. One of the biggest delays in stroke care is that individuals are not seeking care in a timely manner. “There are treatment options for stroke victims up to 24 hours”, said Allen. “According to our patient data; however, patients wait an average of three to five days before seeking medical attention. By educating the community, we hope to shorten the time gap, raise stroke awareness, and ultimately save more lives.”

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