Habersham Medical Center has been recognized for implementing the latest research-based treatment guidelines for stroke patients through the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines®–Stroke quality improvement program.

Habersham Medical Center, a Gold Plus level recipient, is among 915 hospitals receiving a  Get With the Guidelines–Stroke award this year. More than 1,700 hospitals received awards for their achievements in heart, stroke and resuscitation care. All recipients were featured in a special advertisement in the August issue of  U.S. News & World Report’s “America’s Best Hospitals.”

Get With The Guidelines is a hospital-based quality improvement program created to ensure hospitals consistently care for heart and stroke patients using the most up-to-date guidelines and recommendations.

“We are pleased to recognize Habersham Medical Center for their commitment and dedication to 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 Cardiology Programs at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. “Published scientific studies are providing us with more and more evidence that Get With The Guidelines works. Patients are getting the right care they need when they need it. That’s resulting in increased survival.”

With Get With the Guidelines–Stroke treatment guidelines, stroke patients are started on aggressive therapies and medications that can help improve patient care and outcomes. Hospitals must follow these measures at a set level for a designated period of time to be eligible for the achievement awards.

Habersham Medical Center also made the Target: Stroke Honor Roll for ensuring at least 50 percent of eligible stroke patients get prompt treatment to restore blood flow to the brain within 60 minutes of arriving at the hospital — critical to limiting stroke damage.

“We are proud that the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association has chosen the ‘America’s Best Hospitals’ issue of U.S. News & World Report to recognize Habersham Medical Center for our achievements in their quality improvement programs,” said Jerry Wise, CEO. “Get With The Guidelines gives our healthcare team the tools to enhance the treatment and care of our patients.” 

According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, 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.

About Get With The Guidelines:
Get With The Guidelines® is the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s hospital-based quality improvement program that empowers healthcare teams to save lives and reduce healthcare costs by helping hospitals follow evidence-based guidelines and recommendations.  For more information, visit heart.org/quality and find a recognized hospital near you at heart.org/USNWR2015.