Lincoln Hospital can now count itself among an elite group of medical centers for stroke treatment.
After receiving the Silver Plus Performance Achievement Award from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, Lincoln Hospital was listed in the July 2010 issue of US News and World Report’s 100 Best Hospitals in America. The hospital was listed with other awardees from AHA/ASA’s Get With The Guidelines program.
“This award puts us on the map of select hospitals across the country who can succinctly and reliably deliver stroke care to patients,” said Raghu S. Loganathan, director of Lincoln Hospital’s Intensive Care Unit and Stroke Center. “I think the hospital leadership has provided the necessary support as well as the direction. Treating stroke is multidisciplinary, and there were several that spearheaded the program to ensure these things are all done consistently throughout the hospital.”
The center met at least 85 percent of the requirements of the Get With The Guidelines program on stroke performance, and complied with at least 75 percent of the six stroke quality measures for 12 consecutive months in order to qualify for the Silver Plus award.
Meeting the guidelines requires that the center coordinate the aggressive use of medications and anti-coagulation therapy, with other treatments, such as cholesterol-reducing drugs and smoking cessation to successfully treat stroke.
According to Loganathan, the center saw close to 240 patients. About 140 had been admitted with hyper-acute symptoms, he said, which requires the medical team to evaluate and treat the patients, which includes head scans and drug treatments, within 15 to 30 minutes of the patients being accepted.
“In order to do this we have to bring to bear several disciplines to together successfully,” he said. “We have to provide the therapy, then after stroke we need to do interventions to ensure the next stroke doesn’t happen.”
The center has seen steady increases of between 20 and 40 patients each year, Loganathan said. He expects the number of patients coming to the center will continue increasing because of the recent stroke care recognition.
Regardless of the ranking, Loganathan is expecting the numbers of patients at the center to continue to increase because incidents of stroke are increasing across the country because of aging population and poor diets in lower-income communities.
According to the AHA/ASA, on average every three minutes someone dies of stroke and 795,000 people suffer new or recurring strokes each year.