Receives Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award

Get With the Guidelines Stroke AwardMcLaren Northern Michigan is honored to announce they have received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines® - Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award. The award is the highest achievement in stroke care and 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.

By receiving this award, McLaren Northern Michigan met specific quality achievement measures for the diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients. 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.

Patients at McLaren Northern Michigan receive education on managing their personal stroke risk factors as well as any additional care transition interventions needed to assist with the care not just in the hospital, but when they continue recovery at home. One program that is instrumental in post-hospital care is the Stroke Support Group that meets monthly and has a virtual meeting option for those unable to travel onsite.

“McLaren Northern Michigan 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 Zechman, President and CEO of McLaren Northern Michigan. “The tools and resources provided help us track and measure our success in meeting evidenced-based clinical guidelines developed to improve patient outcomes.”

McLaren Northern Michigan additionally received the association’s Target: StrokeSM Elite Plus 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.

“With northern Michigan being a remote area, it is an honor that we are able to meet the highest standard of Target: Stroke Elite Plus,” stated Robert Levy, MD, Stroke Program Director at McLaren Northern Michigan. “More than 75 percent of our acute ischemic stroke patients receive the needed medicine in under 60 minutes, and more than 50 percent receive it within 45 minutes. This wouldn’t be possible without the help of our amazing EMS, Emergency Department staff, Neuro Interventionalists in Flint, and a dedicated stroke care team at McLaren Northern Michigan.”

“We are pleased to recognize McLaren Northern Michigan for their commitment to stroke care,” said Eric E. Smith, M.D., national chairman of the Get With The Guidelines Steering Committee and an associate professor of neurology at the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada. “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 number five 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.