Stroke Center Receives Stroke Gold Plus Award

April 1, 2014

Bassett Medical Center has again been awarded the American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines-Stroke (GWTG-Stroke) Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award. To meet the standard for a gold performance, Bassett consistently met specific quality achievement measures for the rapid diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients over a two-year evaluation period. These measures included aggressive use of medications and risk-reduction therapies aimed at reducing death and disability and improving the lives of stroke patients.

Chief of Neurology Dr. Paul Deringer notes, “Many people don't realize they may not be candidates for specific stroke treatment if they arrive at the hospital after a three-hour window. Every minute counts. That's why it is very important to call 9-1-1 immediately." Dr. Deringer stressed that GWTG—Stroke performance indicators also emphasize the importance of “secondary prevention” of stroke, as patients who have had a stroke or “mini-stroke” are at high risk of having another stroke. Secondary prevention measures include smoking cessation, cholesterol-lowing medications, and the use of antithrombotic and anticoagulant drugs.

Studies have shown that hospitals that consistently follow GWTG quality improvement measures can reduce patients’ length of stays and 30-day readmission rates, as well as reduce disparity gaps in care.

According to the American Stroke Association, each year approximately 700,000 people suffer a stroke—500,000 are first attacks and 200,000 are recurrent. Of stroke survivors, 21 percent of men and 24 percent of women die within a year, and for those aged 65 and older, the percentage is even higher.

As a designated Stroke Center, Bassett Medical Center is equipped 24-hours a day, seven days a week to provide brain imaging scans and use clot-busting drugs when appropriate, and neurologists are available to conduct patient evaluations.

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