Bellin Health earns kudos for stroke excellence

04/03/2012

GREEN BAY — Bellin Health recently earned recognition from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get with the Guidelines stroke program for ensuring that stroke patients receive nationally accepted care standards.

The Green Bay-based health system earned the Stroke Silver Plus Quality Achievement Award through the Get with the Guidelines program. The program is designed to ensure hospitals are consistent in their care of stroke patients utilizing the most up-to-date guidelines and recommendations.

Hospitals are recognized if they can sustain at least 12 consecutive months of 85 percent or higher adherence to all Get with the Guidelines Stroke Quality Achievement indicators and achieve at least 75 percent or higher compliance with six of 10 Get with the Guidelines Stroke Quality Measures within that same time period.

“Bellin Health is to be commended for its commitment to implementing standards of care and protocols for treating stroke patients,” said Dr. Lee H. Schwamm, 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.”

That’s something Bellin’s stroke care experts say they take seriously.

“Our staff and physicians take to heart the stroke care mantra, ‘time lost is brain lost,’” said Kathy Polum, Bellin’s neuroscience coordinator. “Being honored with a Get with the Guidelines Stroke award demonstrates to our patients that our staff is committed to providing care shown in scientific literature to quickly and efficiently treat stroke patients with evidence-based protocols.”

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.