The Queen’s Medical Center Receives American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award

June 2016

The Queen’s Medical Center received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association‘s Get With The Guidelines® – Stroke Gold Plus Achievement Award with Target: StrokeSM Honor Roll Elite Plus.The award recognizes the hospital’s commitment and success ensuring that stroke patients receive the most appropriate treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines based on the latest scientific evidence.

To receive the Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award, hospitals must achieve 85 percent or higher adherence to all Get With The Guidelines-Stroke achievement indicators for two or more consecutive 12-month periods and achieve 75 percent or higher compliance with five of eight Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Quality measures.

To qualify for the Target: StrokeSM Honor Roll Elite Plus, hospitals must meet quality measures developed to reduce the time between the patient‘s arrival at the hospital and treatment with the clot-buster tissue plasminogen activator, or tPA, the only drug approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat ischemic stroke. If given intravenously in the first three to four and a half hours after the start of stroke symptoms, tPA has been shown to significantly reduce the effects of stroke and lessen the chance of permanent disability. Queen’s earned the award by meeting specific quality achievement measures for the diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients at a set level for a designated period. These quality measures are designed to help hospital teams provide the most up-to-date, evidence-based guidelines with the goal of speeding recovery and reducing death and disability for stroke patients.

“With a stroke, time lost is brain lost. Every minute, 1.9 million brain cells vanish. This award demonstrates our commitment to ensuring patients receive rapid and efficient care based on nationally-respected clinical guidelines,” said Cherylee Chang, MD, Director of the Queen’s Stroke Center. “The Queen’s Medical Center is dedicated to improving the quality of stroke care and the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association‘s Get With The Guidelines-Stroke helps us achieve that goal.” 

In 2004, Queen’s became the first in Hawaii to be approved as a Certified Primary Stroke Center by the Joint Commission and had been the only TJC Certified Primary Stroke Center in the State until 2015. Queen’s is currently in the process of seeking certification as a Comprehensive Stroke Center, which would feature a comprehensive system for rapid diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients admitted to the emergency department.

“We are pleased to recognize The Queen’s Medical Center for their commitment to stroke care,” said Deepak L. Bhatt, MD, MPH, 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 length of stay and 30-day readmission rates and reduce disparities in care.” 

In addition, The Queen’s Medical Center – West Oahu received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association‘s Get With The Guidelines® – Stroke Silver Plus Achievement Award with Target: StrokeSM Honor Roll Elite Plus.

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. In Hawaii, it remains the third leading cause of death. 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.