Decatur Memorial Hospital was recognized with a national award for its commitment to ensuring stroke patients receive the most appropriate treatment according to research-based guidelines. The American Heart Association awarded the nonprofit hospital with the Gold Plus Get With The Guidelines – Stroke quality achievement award.
“At Decatur Memorial Hospital, we know seconds matter for stroke patients,” said Drew Early, the hospital’s president and CEO. “This award confirms our commitment to providing comprehensive, expert stroke care for all patients as we continue in our mission to improve lives and build stronger communities through better health.”
Stroke is the fifth leading cause of death and a leading cause of adult disability in the United States. On average, someone suffers a stroke every 40 seconds, and nearly 795,000 people suffer a new or recurring stroke each year. Decatur Memorial Hospital is designated by The Joint Commission as a Primary Stroke Center, which means the hospital meets strict criteria with nationally developed standards for treating stroke patients.
“Our ultimate reward is serving our patients,” said Jennifer Swartz, a registered nurse and stroke coordinator at Decatur Memorial Hospital. “Receiving this recognition, however, represents a remarkable level of teamwork among our colleagues and with local emergency responders to ensure coordinated stroke care for every patient.”
A stroke occurs when a blood vessel carrying oxygen and nutrients to the brain is either blocked by a clot or bursts. When that happens, part of the brain cannot get the blood and oxygen it needs, so brain cells die. Early stroke detection and treatment are key to improving survival, minimizing disability and speeding recovery times.