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Ocala

Ocala Health honored with prestigious award for commitment to stroke care

Ocala Health has received a prestigious award in connection with heart and stroke care.

The healthcare agency was honored with the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s “Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Gold Quality Achievement Award.” The award recognizes the hospital’s commitment to ensuring stroke patients receive the most appropriate treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines founded in the latest scientific evidence.

Ocala Health earned the award by meeting specific quality achievement measures for the diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients at a set level for a designated period.

These measures include evaluation of the proper use of medications and other stroke treatments aligned with the most up-to-date, evidence-based guidelines – with the goal of speeding recovery and reducing death and disability for stroke patients. Care transition interventions such as patient education before discharge and follow-up visit scheduling also are a part of the quality achievement measures the agency has implemented to ensure patients remain on the road to recovery.

“Ocala Health is dedicated to improving the quality of care for our stroke patients by implementing the American Heart Association’s ‘Get With The Guidelines-Stroke initiative,’” said Russ Harper, vice president of neurosciences. “The tools and resources provided help us track and measure our success in meeting evidenced-based clinical guidelines developed to improve patient outcomes.”

Ocala Health additionally received the Association’s Target: Stroke Elite award. To qualify for this recognition, hospitals must meet 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.

Ocala Health additionally received the Association’s Target: Type 2 Honor Roll award. To qualify for this recognition, hospitals must meet quality measures developed with more than 90 percent of compliance for 12 consecutive months for the “Overall Diabetes Cardiovascular Initiative Composite Score.”

Ocala Regional Medical Center also has met specific scientific guidelines as a as a Comprehensive Stroke Center, featuring a comprehensive system for rapid diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients admitted to the emergency department.

“We are pleased to recognize Ocala Health for their commitment to stroke care,” said Dr. Lee H. Schwamm, national chairperson of the Quality Oversight Committee. “Research has shown that hospitals adhering to clinical measures through the ‘Get With The Guidelines’ quality improvement initiative can often see fewer readmissions and lower mortality rates.”

According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, stroke is the No. 5 cause of death and a leading cause of adult disability in the United States. On average, someone in the U.S. suffers a stroke every 40 seconds and nearly 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year.

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