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Baystate Franklin Medical Center receives awards for its care of patients with stroke

July 10, 2015

For the third year in a row, Baystate Franklin Medical Center has received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award. This year, the hospital has also been named to the Target: StrokeSM Honor Roll. The awards recognize Baystate Franklin’s commitment to and success in ensuring that patients with stroke receive the most appropriate treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines that are based on the latest scientific evidence.

According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, stroke is the number five cause of death and a leading cause of adult 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.

To receive the Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award, hospitals must achieve 85 percent or higher adherence to all Get With The Guidelines-Stroke achievement indicators for two or more consecutive 12-month periods, and must have achieved 75 percent or higher compliance with five of the eight Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Quality measures.

To qualify for the Target: Stroke Honor Roll, 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 (tPA), the only drug approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat ischemic stroke. When given intravenously in the first three hours after the start of stroke symptoms, tPA has been shown to significantly reduce the effects of stroke and lessen the chance of permanent disability. Baystate Franklin Medical Center earned this second award by meeting specific quality achievement measures for the diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients at a set level for a designated period.

“The staff at Baystate Franklin are committed to continuously improving the acute stroke care process,” said Dr. Rajiv Padmanabhan, of Greenfield Neurology. “We owe special thanks to Dr. Rakesh ‘Kishi’ Talati, medical director of BFMC’s Emergency Department, and to Diane Stephan, RN, clinical nurse coordinator, for guiding such an integrated staff effort to ensure high quality care for all of our patients with stroke.”

For health care providers, Get With The Guidelines-Stroke offers quality improvement measures, discharge protocols, standing orders and other measurement tools – helping them save lives and ultimately reduce overall healthcare costs by lowering readmission rates for stroke patients.

For patients, Get With The Guidelines-Stroke uses the “teachable moment,” the time soon after a patient has had a stroke, when they learn how to manage their risk factors while still in the hospital and to recognize the warning signs of a stroke.