A Leader in stroke care: Roper Hospital gets gold

Roper Hospital’s Stroke Center has earned the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s highest recognition for excellent stroke care – the Get With The Guidelines – Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award for the second consecutive year.

The award title is bestowed on healthcare facilities that meet and exceed quality measures outlined in the AHA/ASA’s “Get with the Guidelines – Stroke” program.

A longtime leader of stroke care in the Lowcountry, Roper Hospital’s Stroke Center participated in the “Get with the Guidelines – Stroke” program, an in-hospital process for continuous quality improvements based on quality measures over one year. The program helps ensure that patients are treated and discharged appropriately with the proper medications and instructions for recovery, improving stroke patient outcomes.

Roper Hospital joined the “Get with the Guidelines” program in 2006 and has since become a primary destination for stroke care. The AHA/ASA has recognized the Roper Hospital Stroke Program with Bronze and Silver Achievement awards (2007-2008) and Gold Achievement awards (2008-2010). To receive the Gold Plus award, a hospital must achieve 85 percent or higher adherence to all “Get With The Guidelines” – Stroke Quality Achievement indicators for two or more consecutive 12-month intervals and achieve 75 percent or higher compliance with six of 10 quality measures, which are reporting initiatives to measure quality of care. 

“Stroke is the third leading cause of death in South Carolina, right behind heart disease,” said Kevin Fleming, director of neuro, spine and orthopedics programs at Roper St. Francis Healthcare. “It is important that our communities can trust in us to help them through a stroke and their recovery. The Gold Plus award recognizes our commitment to providing that quality of care.”

The “Get with the Guidelines” program not only measures consistent performance and attention to quality, it also teaches lifesaving therapies and includes tools that reinforce treatment options. A stroke occurs when a blood vessel that carries oxygen to the brain bursts or is blocked by a clot.

“Roper St. Francis routinely offers stroke screenings for our community,” said Stacey Seipel, clinical nurse specialist and stroke program coordinator, Roper Hospital. “Educating people about the signs of stroke and the importance of calling 911 and getting immediate emergency care is critically important to a patient’s outcome. Time is of the essence.”

The Roper Hospital Stroke Center was the first Primary Stroke Center in the Lowcountry in 2006. Since that time, Roper Hospital has also been recertified by the Joint Commission’s Primary Stroke Center Advanced Certification, and Roper Rehabilitation Hospital inside Roper Hospital has been recognized by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities. Patients affected by stroke receive personalized care from doctors, nurses, and physical, occupational, and speech language therapists to help them recover.

To learn more about the Roper Hospital’s Stroke Program, visit www.rsfh.com/stroke. For more information on Get with the Guidelines, visit www.americanheart.org/getwiththeguidlines.

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