Oceanside, NY, June 14, 2015 — — South Nassau Communities was awarded the American Heart Association/
American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines®–Target: Stroke Honor Roll-Elite Quality Achievement Award at the association’s International Stroke Conference 2015.
The award recognizes South Nassau’s commitment and success to ensuring that stroke patients receive the most appropriate treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines.
“This award demonstrates our steadfast commitment to ensuring patients receive care based on nationally-respected clinical guidelines,” said Joshua Kugler, MD, chair of the Emergency Services Department at South Nassau.
To receive the Target: Stroke Honor Roll-Elite award, South Nassau fulfilled quality measures developed to reduce the time between the patient’s arrival at the hospital and treatment with the clot-buster tissue plasminogen activator, or tPA, the only drug approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat ischemic stroke. If 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. Over twelve months, at least 75 percent of the hospital’s ischemic stroke patients have received tPA within 60 minutes of arriving at the hospital (known as door-to-needle time).
The tPA therapy is not an option for patients with hemorrhagic stroke (which is when a blood vessel in the brain leaks or bursts) or who have: bleeding ulcer, blood clotting problems, brain cancer, extremely high blood pressure or prior bleeding problems.
The quality measures are designed to help hospital teams provide the most up-to-date, evidence-based guidelines with the goal of speeding recovery and reducing death and disability for stroke patients. South Nassau has also met specific scientific guidelines as a Primary Stroke Center, featuring a comprehensive system for rapid diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients admitted to its emergency department.
A study appearing in the April 23-30, 2014, issue of Journal of the American Medical Association examining the results of “Target: Stroke” found that implementation of the quality initiative was associated with improvement in the time to treatment and a lower risk of in-hospital death, intracranial hemorrhage (bleeding in the brain), and an increase in the portion of patients discharged to their home. Coordinated by Gregg C. Fonarow, M.D., of the University of California, Los Angeles, and based on the outcomes of more than 71,000 patients, the study’s findings further reinforced the importance and clinical benefits of more rapid administration of intravenous tPA.