Harris Health’s Ben Taub Hospital Receives Stroke Award from American Heart Association

Harris Health System Ben Taub Hospital is being recognized for its success in implementing a higher standard of care for stroke patients with the Get With The Guidelines®–Stroke Silver Plus Quality Achievement Award from the American Heart Association.

The Get With The Guidelines–Stroke recognizes hospitals that develop and implement acute and secondary prevention guideline processes to improve patient care and outcomes. The program provides hospitals with a Web-based patient management tool, best practice discharge protocols and standing orders, along with a robust registry and real-time benchmarking capabilities to track performance.

"Ben Taub Hospital is dedicated to making our care for stroke patients among the best in the country. The American Heart Association’s "Get With The Guidelines–Stroke” program helps us to accomplish this goal," says Jeff Webster, administrator, Harris Health Ben Taub Hospital. "This recognition demonstrates that we are truly a stroke 'center of excellence' with a focus on rapid response and treatment. We’re very proud of our Stroke Team."

The quick and efficient use of guideline procedures can improve the quality of care for stroke patients and may reduce disability and save lives.

"Recent studies show that patients treated in hospitals participating in the American Heart Association’s Get With The Guidelines-Stroke program receive a higher quality of care and may experience better outcomes," said Lee H. Schwamm, M.D., chair, Get With The Guidelines National Steering Committee, and director, TeleStroke and Acute Stroke Services at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. "Ben Taub Hospital team is to be commended for their commitment to improving the care of their patients."

Following Get With The Guidelines-Stroke treatment guidelines, patients are started on aggressive risk-reduction therapies including the use of medications such as tPA, antithrombotics and anticoagulation therapy, along with cholesterol reducing drugs and smoking cessation counseling. These are all aimed at reducing death and disability and improving the lives of stroke patients. Hospitals must adhere to these measures at a set level for a designated period of time to be eligible for the achievement awards.

According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, stroke is one of the leading causes of death and serious, long-term 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.