Auburn Community Hospital receives Bronze Stroke Achievement Award

Posted on: 07/21/2014

July 15, 2014 6:15 am  •  Michelle Crews | Special to The Citizen

Auburn Community Hospital is proud to announce its achievement of the 2014 American Heart Association Get with the Guidelines Bronze Stroke Achievement Award, demonstrating excellence in hospital improvement.

“The award recognizes Auburn Community Hospital’s commitment and success in implementing a higher standard of stroke care by ensuring that stroke patients receive treatment according to the nationally accepted standards and recommendations,” said Director of Nursing Tammy Sunderlin, R.N., MSN. “With a stroke, time lost is brain lost, and this award demonstrates that our staff is committed to providing care that has been shown in the scientific literature to quickly and efficiently treat stroke patients with evidence-based protocols.”

To receive this award, hospitals must demonstrate at least 85-percent compliance in each of the seven Get With The Guidelines Stroke Achievement Measures. The different levels reflect the amount of time the hospital demonstrates this performance, while providing tangible evidence of commitment to quality care for heart disease and stroke patients. Scott Berlucchi, president and CEO of ACH, said, “This award further illustrates our ongoing commitment to provide the highest level of quality care for the members of our community."

The Get with the Guidelines achievement measures evaluate the timeliness with which people experiencing stroke symptoms are transported to the hospital emergency room and the percentage of patients who are given the appropriate treatment, according to the press release. These measures include aggressive use of medications, such as 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, according to the American Heart Association website.

“Stroke is one of the leading causes of death and serious, long-term disability in the United States. On average, someone suffers from 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,” Dr. Karen Odrzywolski said. “The full implementation of acute care and secondary prevention recommendations and guidelines is a critical point in saving the lives and improving outcomes of stroke patients.  As the only designated stroke center in Cayuga County, Auburn Community Hospital provides closer access for patients, which means saving time and saving brain.”

Since Get with the Guidelines' initiation in 2003, 1,656 hospitals have entered more than 2 million patient records into the stroke database. "Numerous published studies demonstrate the program's success in achieving measurable patient outcome improvements,” the American Heart Association website says.

According to the site, “In-hospital initiation of American Heart Association/American Stroke Association guideline-recommended acute and secondary prevention therapies in hospitalized stroke patients have been associated with improved treatment rates.”

Thomas Filiak is vice president of administration at Auburn Community Hospital. For more information, call (315) 255-7011.

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