The Regional Medical Center Recognized with Three Quality Awards


The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association recently recognized the Regional Medical Center with three Get With The Guidelines® awards illustrating a strong commitment to improved patient outcomes.

  The Regional Medical Center has been recognized with three American Heart Association/American Stroke Association Get With The Guidelines® awards illustrating a commitment to improved patient outcomes. Representatives from RMC’s cardiac and stroke programs are pictured with their awards.
RMC received the Heart Failure GOLD PLUS Achievement Award, the Stroke GOLD PLUS Achievement Award and the Resuscitation SILVER Achievement Award. Get With The Guidelines® is the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s hospital-based quality improvement program that empowers healthcare teams to save lives and reduce healthcare costs by helping hospitals follow evidence-based guidelines and recommendations

“The Regional Medical Center is dedicated to improving the quality of care for our cardiac and stroke patients, and implementing the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines® program helps us to accomplish this goal by tracking and measuring our success in meeting internationally-respected guidelines,” said Interim RMC President & CEO Bert Whitaker.

Get With The Guidelines®-Heart Failure is a quality improvement program that helps hospital teams follow the most up-to-date, research-based standards with the goal of speeding recovery and reducing hospital readmissions for heart failure patients. Launched in 2005, numerous published studies have demonstrated the program’s success in achieving patient outcome improvements, including reductions in 30-day readmissions. According to the American Heart Association, about 5.7 million adults in the United States suffer from heart failure, with the number expected to rise to eight million by 2030.

RMC earned the GOLD PLUS recognition by meeting specific quality achievement measures for the diagnosis and treatment of heart failure patients. These measures include evaluation of the patient, proper use of medications and aggressive risk-reduction therapies, such as ACE inhibitors/ARBs, beta-blockers, diuretics, anticoagulants, and other appropriate therapies. Before patients are discharged, they also receive education on managing their heart failure and overall health; get a follow-up visit scheduled, as well as other care transition interventions.

RMC also received the association’s Target: Heart FailureSM Honor Roll. Target: Heart Failure is an initiative that provides hospitals with educational tools, prevention programs and treatment guidelines designed to reduce the risk of heart failure patients ending up back in the hospital. Hospitals are required to meet criteria that improves medication adherence, provides early follow-up care and coordination and enhances patient education. The goal is to reduce hospital readmissions and help patients improve their quality of life in managing this chronic condition.

“We are pleased to recognize the Regional Medical Center for their commitment to heart failure care,” said Paul Heidenreich, M.D., M.S., national chairman of the Get With The Guidelines Steering Committee and Professor of Medicine at Stanford University. “Research has shown there are benefits to patients who are treated at hospitals that have adopted the Get With The Guidelines program. Get With the Guidelines research has demonstrated the impact of lowering 30-day readmissions and reducing mortality rates.”

In addition to the heart failure award, RMC also received recognition for stroke care. The Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke GOLD PLUS Quality Achievement Award recognizes the hospital’s commitment to providing the most appropriate stroke treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines based on the latest scientific evidence. 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 achieve 75 percent or higher compliance with five of eight Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Quality measures to earn the GOLD PLUS recognition.

The RMC stroke care program, also qualified for the Target: Stroke Honor Roll Elite. To earn this designation, RMC met 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.

“A stroke patient loses 1.9 million neurons each minute stroke treatment is delayed. This recognition further demonstrates our commitment to delivering advanced stroke treatments to patients quickly and safely,” said RMC Stroke Program Coordinator and Telehealth Coordinator Sherry Davis, BSN, RN, SCRN. “RMC continues to strive for excellence in the acute treatment of stroke patients. The recognition from the American Heart Association / American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke further reinforces our team’s hard work.”

RMC also received the Get With The Guidelines®-Resuscitation Silver Award for implementing specific quality improvement measures outlined by the American Heart Association for the treatment of patients who suffer cardiac arrests in the hospital.

More than 200,000 adults and children have an in-hospital cardiac arrest each year, according to the American Heart Association. The Get With The Guidelines®-Resuscitation program was developed with the goal to save lives of those who experience in-hospital cardiac arrests through consistently following the most up-to-date research-based guidelines for treatment. Guidelines include following protocols for patient safety, medical emergency team response, effective and timely resuscitation (CPR) and post-resuscitation care.

RMC received the award for meeting specific measures in treating adult patients who suffer in-hospital cardiac arrests. To receive this award a hospital must comply with the quality measures for one year.

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