LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 3, 2010) – The UK HealthCare Kentucky Neuroscience Institute Stroke Program has received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s “Get With The Guidelines” Stroke Silver Plus Performance Achievement Award. The award recognizes UK HealthCare and the Kentucky Neuroscience Institute for commitment and success in implementing a higher standard of stroke care by ensuring that stroke patients receive treatment according to nationally accepted standards and recommendations. To receive the “Get With The Guidelines” Stroke Silver Plus Performance Achievement Award, the UK Stroke Program achieved at least 12 consecutive months of 85 percent or higher adherence to all AHA stroke performance achievement indicators, and concurrently achieved 75 percent or higher compliance with at least six out of ten stroke quality measures.
These measures include aggressive use of medications, such as: tPA, antithrombotics, anticoagulation therapy, deep-vein thrombosis prophylaxis and cholesterol reducing drugs – all aimed at reducing death and disability and improving the lives of stroke patients. Smoking cessation education is also an important part of the guidelines.
“UK HealthCare is to be commended for its commitment to implementing standards of care and protocols for treating stroke patients,” said Dr. Lee H. Schwamm, chair of the “Get WithThe Guidelines” national steering committee and director of 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.”
The “Get With the Guidelines” protocols encourage healthcare providers to capitalize on teachable moments soon after a patient has a stroke. 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.
According to the American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association, stroke is the third leading cause of death in the U.S., as well as a leading cause of long-term disability. In the U.S., on average, someone suffers a stroke every 45 seconds; someone dies of a stroke every three minutes; and 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year.
For more information on the UK HealthCare Stroke Program, visit http://ukhealthcare.uky.edu/stroke/index.asp. To learn more about “Get With The Guidelines,” visit http://www.americanheart.org/getwiththeguidelines.