Capital Health First, and Only*, Hospital in Mercer County to Earn Target: Stroke Honor Roll Award

Also Receives Gold Plus Recognition for Second Year in a Row for Stroke Care

TRENTON, NJ (April 12, 2012) --- Capital Health has been recognized by the American Heart Association|American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines®  - Stroke program and Target: Stroke, a national stroke initiative.
 
The healthcare system, which offers the only state comprehensive stroke center between Trenton and Atlantic City, is the only hospital in Mercer County* to receive the American Heart Association|American Stroke Association’s Target: Stroke Honor Roll Award and has also been awarded for the second time the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines® Stroke Gold Plus Performance Achievement Award.  The award recognizes Capital Health’s commitment and success in implementing excellent care for stroke patients, according to evidence-based guidelines.

“The team at Capital Health is exceptional, and extends through every aspect of care that our patients receive,” said Dr. James Ware, medical director of the stroke program at Capital Health. “To achieve these recognitions is an acknowledgement of their commitment to delivering outstanding stroke care and they are to be commended.”

“Capital Health’s commitment to the stroke patient is very clear: provide outstanding care,” said Dr. Erol Veznedaroglu, Chair, Department of Neurosurgery and director of the Capital Institute for Neurosciences at Capital Health. “Providing excellent care is something we work hard to do every day and it’s something we will continue to deliver to the patients who depend on us.”

To receive the Get With The Guidelines-Stroke award, Capital Health achieved 85 percent or higher adherence to all Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Achievement indicators for two or more consecutive 12-month intervals and achieved 75 percent or higher compliance with six of 10 Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Quality Measures, which are reporting initiatives to measure quality of care.  Capital Health consistently exceeded these standards.

Capital Health also has also been recognized as a recipient of the association’s Target: Stroke Honor Roll, for improving stroke care.  Hospitals are recognized on the Target: Stroke Honor Roll for achieving 50% or greater for at least one calendar quarter on the following Get with the Guidelines-Stroke PMT measure: percent of acute ischemic stroke patients treated with IV rt-PA with door-to-needle times ≤ 60 minutes.

“Capital Health 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.”

Capital Health Regional Medical Center is a state designated Comprehensive Stroke Center which establishes it as a leader in providing advanced care for patients suffering from stroke. The healthcare system’s new hospital in Hopewell Township is a state designated Primary Stroke Center. Capital Health has also received certification from The Joint Commission -- the gold standard for stroke care. Capital Health is home of the Stroke and Cerebrovascular Center of New Jersey and the Capital Institute for Neurosciences, which gives the hospital an even greater ability to treat the most critical cerebrovascular patients utilizing the most advanced technologies and treatments. The hospital offers one of only a handful of neurosurgical intensive care units in the state and last year opened the country’s first Center for Neurologic Emergency Medicine at its Regional Medical Center, a dedicated emergency program for patients requiring emergency care involving the brain, spine or central nervous system.

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 health care 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.

According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, stroke is the third leading cause of death in the United States and a leading cause of serious, long-term disability.  On average, someone suffers a stroke every 45 seconds; someone dies of a stroke every three minutes; and 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year.

For more information on Get With The Guidelines, visit www.heart.org/quality.

*As of April 2, 2012

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