Get With The Guidelines - Stroke Gold Plus AwardUNC Health Care is pleased to announce that seven of its hospitals – Nash UNC Health Care, Onslow Memorial Hospital, Pardee UNC Health Care, UNC Hospitals, UNC Lenoir Health Care, UNC REX Healthcare and Wayne UNC Health Care –  have received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines® – Stroke Gold Plus 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 based on the latest scientific evidence.

These hospitals 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. Before discharge, patients should also receive education on managing their health, get a follow-up visit scheduled, as well as other care transition interventions.

“UNC 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 David Huang, M.D., Ph.D., Director of the UNC Hospitals Stroke Center. “The tools and resources provided help us track and measure our success in meeting evidenced-based clinical guidelines developed to improve patient outcomes.”

In addition, Nash UNC Health Care, UNC Hospitals, UNC Lenoir Health Care, and UNC REX Healthcare received the Association’s Target: StrokeSM 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.

UNC Hospital qualified for the Target: Stroke Honor Roll Advanced Therapy designation by measuring Door-To-Device (DTD) times in at least 50% of applicable patients within 90 minutes for direct arriving and within 60 minutes for transfer.

Nash UNC Health Care, Onslow Memorial Hospital, Pardee UNC Health Care, UNC Hospitals, UNC Lenoir Health Care, UNC REX Healthcare and Wayne UNC Health Care received the Association’s Target: Type 2 Diabetes Honor Roll award. To qualify for this recognition, hospitals must meet quality measures developed with more than 90% of compliance for 12 consecutive months for the “Overall Diabetes Cardiovascular Initiative Composite Score.”

“We are pleased to recognize UNC Health for their commitment to stroke care,” said Lee H. Schwamm, M.D., national chairperson of the Quality Oversight Committee and Executive Vice Chair of Neurology, Director of Acute Stroke Services, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts. “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.

About Get With The Guidelines®

Get With The Guidelines® is the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s hospital-based quality improvement program that provides hospitals with tools and resources to increase adherence to the latest research-based guidelines. Developed with the goal of saving lives and hastening recovery, Get With The Guidelines has touched the lives of more than 6 million patients since 2001. For more information, visit heart.org/quality.