Delray Medical Center Receives Quality Achievement Awards

Mar 29, 2015

Awards demonstrate Delray Medical Center’s commitment to quality care for heart failure and stroke patients

Delray Beach, Fla. (March 30, 2015) – Delray Medical Center proudly accepts a string of Get With The Guidelines awards from the American Heart/Stroke Association, including the Heart Failure Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award, the Target: Heart Failure Honor Roll, and the Target Stroke Honor Roll-Elite Plus Quality Achievement Award. The recognitions signify that Delray Medical Center is committed to implementing a higher standard of care by ensuring that heart failure and stroke patients receive treatment according to nationally accepted guidelines.

The American Heart Association’s Get With The Guidelines program is a quality improvement initiative that provides hospital staff with tools that follow proven evidence-based guidelines and procedures in caring for heart failure and stroke patients. These achievements help improve outcomes, prevent future hospitalizations and help prolong life.

“Delray Medical Center is proud to be recognized with these quality achievement awards from The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association,” said hospital CEO Mark Bryan. “Based off of nationally respected, clinical guidelines, these recognitions show that Delray Medical Center is dedicated to improving the quality of heart and stroke care.”

Following Get With The Guidelines–Heart Failure treatment guidelines, patients are started on aggressive risk-reduction therapies if needed, including ACE inhibitors/ARB’s, beta-blockers, diuretics, anticoagulants and other appropriate therapies while in the hospital. Before discharge, they also receive education on managing their heart failure and overall health, including lifestyle modifications and follow-up care. Hospitals must adhere to these measures at a set level for a designated period of time to be eligible for the achievement awards.

The Target: Heart Failure Honor Roll initiative provides hospitals with educational tools, prevention programs and treatment guidelines designed to reduce the risk of heart failure patients ending up back in the hospital. Hospitals are required to meet criteria that improves medication adherence, provides early follow-up care and coordination, and enhances patient education. The goal is to reduce hospital readmissions and help patients improve their quality of life in managing this chronic condition.

Following Get With The Guidelines - Target: Stroke Honor Roll-Elite Plus treatment guidelines, Delray Medical Center’s Comprehensive Stroke Center met quality measures developed to reduce the time between patients’ arrival to the hospital and treatment with the tissue plasminogen activator, or tPA. This clot-busting drug has been shown to significantly reduce the effects of stroke and lessen the chance of permanent disability if given within the first three hours of symptom onset. Over 12 months, at least 75 percent of Delray Medical Center’s ischemic stroke patients received tPA within 60 minutes of arriving and at least 50 percent of the hospital’s ischemic stroke patients received tPA within 45 minutes of arriving at the hospital.

“We are pleased to recognize Delray Medical Center for their commitment to heart failure and stroke care,” said Deepak L. Bhatt, M.D., M.P.H., national chairman of the Get With The Guidelines steering committee and Executive Director of Interventional Cardiovascular Programs at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. “Studies have shown that hospitals that consistently follow Get With The Guidelines quality improvement measures can reduce patients’ length of stays and 30-day readmission rates and also reduce disparity gaps in care.”

According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, about 5.7 million people suffer from heart failure, with the number expected to rise to eight million by 2030. Statistics also show that each year, about 870,000 new cases are diagnosed and about 50 percent of those diagnosed will die within five years. However, many heart failure patients can lead a full, enjoyable life when their condition is managed with proper medications, devices and healthy lifestyle changes. Stroke is the number five cause of death and a leading cause of adult disability in the United States. On average, someone suffers a stroke every 40 seconds; someone dies of a stroke every four minutes; and 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year.

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