MASON CITY, IA – Mercy Medical Center – North Iowa recently received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines®–Stroke Gold Quality Achievement Award. The award recognizes Mercy – North Iowa’s commitment and success in implementing a higher standard of stroke care by ensuring that stroke patients receive treatment for at least 24 months according to nationally accepted standards and recommendations.
“With a stroke, time lost is brain lost, and Stroke Gold Performance Achievement Award addresses the important element of time,” said Alireza Yarahmadi, M.D, Medical Director of Mercy Stroke Center. “The Mercy Stroke team has developed a comprehensive system for rapid diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients admitted to the emergency department. This includes always being equipped to provide brain imaging scans, having hospitalists and neurologists available to conduct patient evaluations and using clot-busting medications when appropriate.”
To receive the Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Gold Quality Achievement Award, Mercy – North Iowa demonstrated 85% adherence in the Get With The Guidelines–Stroke key measures for 24 or more consecutive months. These include aggressive use of medications like tPA, antithrombotics, anticoagulation therapy, DVT prophylaxis, cholesterol-reducing drugs, and smoking cessation. “The American Stroke Association commends Mercy – North Iowa for its success in implementing standards of care and protocols,” said Lee H. Schwamm, M.D., chair of the Get With The Guidelines National Steering Committee. “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.”
“Stroke can be a very disabling and life-altering disease,” said Jennifer Thoe, R.N., M.S.N., Mercy Stroke Center Coordinator. “That is why it so important for the community to seek emergent medical attention at the first sign of stroke and for Mercy – North Iowa to be prepared to treat and manage the disease according to evidence-based practice.” 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/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 Mercy Stroke Center Mercy - North Iowa is the only stroke certified center in the North Iowa area, and one of nine hospitals in the state to earn the Gold Seal of Approval from The Joint Commission for Primary Stroke Centers. Mercy’s stroke program is supported by physicians, neurologists, a nurse coordinator, nursing staff, pharmacists, therapists, dieticians, social services/case managers and technicians from many departments.
For information about Mercy Stroke Center and the services available, please contact Jennifer Thoe, R.N., M.S.N, Stroke Care Coordinator at 641-428-7109.