Mercy Earns National Stroke Achievement Award for Eighth Straight Year

SPRINGFIELD — For the eighth year in a row, Mercy Medical Center has received the American Heart Assoc. (AHA) Gold Plus Get with the Guidelines – Stroke Quality Achievement Award for its commitment to ensuring stroke patients receive the most appropriate treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines.

Stroke is not only the fifth-leading cause of death, it is also 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.

Get with the Guidelines – Stroke was developed to assist healthcare professionals to provide the most up-to-date, research-based guidelines for treating stroke patients. 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.

“Implementation of the American Heart Association’s Get with the Guidelines – Stroke initiative clearly aligns with Mercy Medical Center’s dedication to the delivery of high-quality stroke care and our culture of continuous improvement,” said Dr. Robert Roose, chief medical officer at Mercy Medical Center. “As a proud recipient of the association’s Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award for the past eight years, we have additional confirmation of Mercy’s long-standing and ongoing commitment to excellence in patient care through a comprehensive approach.”

Mercy Medical Center also received the AHA’s Target: Stroke Honor Roll Elite 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 treatment with the clot-buster tissue plasminogen activator, or tPA, the only drug approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat ischemic stroke.

“We are pleased to recognize Mercy Medical Center for their commitment to stroke care,” said Dr. Lee Schwamm, national chairperson of the Quality Oversight Committee and executive vice chair of Neurology ands director of Acute Stroke Services at Massachusetts General Hospital in 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.”