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ECMC receives Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Silver Plus Quality Achievement Award

Erie County Medical (ECMC) Corporation has received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association's Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Silver Plus Quality Achievement Award.  The award recognizes ECMC's 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 Quality Achievement Award, ECMC achieved at least 12 consecutive months of 85 percent or higher adherence to all Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Quality Achievement indicators and achieved at least 75 percent or higher compliance with six of 10 Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Quality Measures during that same period of time, which are reporting initiatives to measure quality of care. 

With a stroke, time lost is brain lost.  The nationally accepted stroke treatment measures include aggressive use of medications, such as tPA, 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. 

"ECMC is focused on improving the quality of stroke care by implementing Get With The Guidelines-Stroke, following evidence-based protocols that have been shown in the scientific literature to quickly and efficiently treat acute ischemic stroke patients," said Paula Quesinberry, BSN, RN, Stroke Program Coordinator and EEG Supervisor, ECMC. 

"ECMC is to be commended for its commitment to implementing standards of care and protocols for treating stroke patients," said Lee H. Schwamm, M.D., chair of the Get With The Guidelines National Steering Committee and director of the TeleStroke and 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." 

Get With The Guidelines-Stroke uses the "teachable moment," the time soon after a patient has had a stroke, when they are most likely to listen to and follow their healthcare professionals' guidance.  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.  Through Get With The Guidelines-Stroke, customized patient education materials are made available at the point of discharge, based on patients' individual risk profiles.  The take-away materials are written in an easy-to-understand format and are available in English and Spanish. In addition, the Get With The Guidelines Patient Management Tool provides access to up-to-date cardiovascular and stroke science at the point of care. 

"The fact that ECMC earned the Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Silver Plus Quality Achievement Award demonstrates that our clinicians are committed to providing care that has been shown to quickly and efficiently treat stroke patients," said Jody L. Lomeo, Chief Executive Officer, ECMC Corp. 

The number of acute ischemic stroke patients eligible for treatment is projected to grow over the next decade due to a large aging population.  According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, stroke is one of the leading causes of death and serious, long-term disability in the United States.  On average, someone suffers 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.  

About Erie County Medical Center (ECMC) Corporation: ECMC Corporation includes an advanced academic medical center (ECMC) with 550 inpatient beds and 136 skilled-nursing-home beds, on- and off-campus health centers, more than 30 outpatient specialty care services and a long-term care facility.  ECMC is the regional center for trauma, burn care, transplantation and rehabilitation and is a major teaching facility for the University at Buffalo.  Most ECMC physicians, dentists and pharmacists are dedicated faculty members of the university and/or members of a private practice plan.  More Western New York residents are choosing ECMC for exceptional patient care and patient experiences-the difference between healthcare and true careTM

About Get With The Guidelines: Get With The Guidelines® is the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association's hospital-based quality improvement program that empowers healthcare teams to save lives and reduce healthcare costs by helping hospitals follow evidence-based guidelines and recommendations.  For more information, visit heart.org/quality.

NEWS CONTACT:  Joe Cirillo: 716-898-4300 -or- jcirillo@ecmc.edu          

12/27/2012

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