Beaufort Memorial Joins Elite Group of Hospitals Achieving Highest Quality of Stroke Care

Beaufort Memorial Hospital (BMH) has achieved the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s highest level of recognition for stroke care, joining the ranks of some of the best hospitals in the country.

This year, BMH was honored with the Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award for providing stroke patients with the most up-to-date, evidence-based care. In addition, it qualified for Target: Stroke Honor Roll-Elite Plus status, reserved for hospitals that consistently deliver expeditious treatment to patients suffering an acute ischemic stroke.  

“With a stroke, minutes count,” said Beaufort Memorial Vice President of Quality Services Shawna Doran. “These awards demonstrate our commitment to quality in following evidence-based practices for stroke care.”

  Recipients of the Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award must follow treatment guidelines at least 85 percent of the time for two or more consecutive 12-month periods and achieve a minimum 75 percent compliance with five of eight stroke quality measures.  

The quality measures are designed to help hospital teams provide appropriate treatment based on the latest scientific evidence shown to raise patients’ survival rates and minimize permanent disability.  

To qualify for Target: Stroke Honor Roll Elite Plus, BMH had to meet quality measures developed to reduce the time it takes for patients to be diagnosed and treated with the clot-busting medication tPA – the only drug approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat ischemic stroke. According to current guidelines, the drug should be started within 60 minutes of a patient’s arrival in the hospital to minimize brain damage and potential complications.  

BMH physicians have consistently outperformed the “door-to-needle” goal, averaging 44 minutes in 2016.               

“It takes constant vigilance by our staff to maintain the highest standards of care,” Doran said. “We review every stroke case, always striving for excellence in the acute treatment of stroke patients.”  

The fifth leading cause of death in the United States, stroke ranks as the No. 3 killer in South Carolina, part of an 11-state region in the United States known as the Stroke Belt.  

To improve patient care for stroke patients in the community, Beaufort Memorial has taken full advantage of the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) Health Telestroke, a Web-based program that provides Emergency Department and Intensive Care Unit physicians with on-demand access to MUSC Health stroke experts for consultations.  

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