Kent Hospital Stroke Center Earns Top Accreditation

January 12, 2009

WARWICK, R.I., Jan. 12 /PRNewswire/ — The Stroke Center at Kent Hospital has earned the Gold Seal of Approval(TM) from The Joint Commission for Primary Stroke Centers.

Kent Hospital demonstrated that its stroke care program follows national standards and guidelines that can significantly improve outcomes for stroke patients,” says Jean E. Range, MS, RN, CPHQ, executive director, Disease-Specific Care Certification, Joint Commission.

Each year about 700,000 people experience a new or recurrent stroke, which is the nation’s third leading cause of death. Stroke is a leading cause of serious, long-term disability in the United States, with about 4.7 million stroke survivors alive today.

“We’re proud to achieve the distinction as a Primary Stroke Center,” says Sandra L. Coletta, President and CEO of Kent Hospital, Joint Commission Primary Stroke Center Certification recognizes Kent Hospital’s commitment to providing outstanding care to our patients and our community.”

The goal of the Stroke Center at Kent Hospital is to speed the process of diagnosis and start treatment as quickly as possible. “Time is of the essence when treating a stroke,” says S.M. Arshad Iqbal, MD, Board Certified Neurologist and Physician Director of Kent’s Stroke Program. “The faster we can treat the patient, the better the patient’s chances for a complete recovery.”

Stroke patients who are treated within 3 hours of the start of stroke symptoms are more likely to recover with little or no disability. The Stroke Center at Kent Hospital is prepared to handle any stroke-related emergency 24-hours a day, 7 days a week.

At Kent Hospital, the stroke team is organized and trained to save precious minutes. If a person calls 911 immediately at the first signs of a stroke, EMS crews can notify the team that a potential stroke patient is en route. Potential stroke patients are evaluated within ten minutes of arrival. Critical imaging scans are performed within 25 minutes and results arrive within 45 minutes. These steps allow careful diagnosis and treatment to begin within 1 hour of arrival.

Once the patient passes through the initial crisis stage, the Stroke Center offers all of the resources needed to aid in recovery. Since every situation is unique, each patient is evaluated, and then it is determined what services are needed. Kent’s full service stroke care includes an Intensive Care Unit for medical treatment and further evaluation, a Dedicated Stroke Unit to complete medical evaluation and start the recovery process, Rehabilitation for intense therapies and Outpatient Rehabilitation for continued physical, occupational and speech therapies as needed.

Excellence in each of these areas was necessary to achieve the Joint Commission for Primary Stroke Centers’ accreditation. To earn this distinction the hospital had to undergo a rigorous evaluation process developed in conjunction by the Brain Attack Coalition and the American Stroke Association’s statements/guidelines for stroke care. This included an on-site visit. Written care protocols, education programs and quality indicators were assessed along with performance measurement.

Founded in 1951, The Joint Commission seeks to continuously improve the safety and quality of care provided to the public through the provision of health care accreditation and related services that support performance improvement in health care organizations. The Joint Commission evaluates and accredits more then 15,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States, including more than 8,000 hospitals and home care organizations, and more than 6,800 other health care organizations that provide long term care, assisted living, behavioral health care, laboratory and ambulatory care services. The Joint Commission also accredits health plans, integrated delivery networks, and other managed care entities. In addition, the Joint Commission provides certification of disease-specific care programs, primary stroke centers, and health care staffing services. An independent, not-for-profit organization, the Joint Commission is the nation’s oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in health care. Learn more about the Joint Commission at www.jointcommission.org.

Kent Hospital also offers educational programs and materials to help Rhode Island residents recognize the signs of a stroke and to call 911 immediately.

(Please see attached sidebar of stroke symptoms.)

For more information about The Stroke Center or upcoming educational programs at Kent Hospital, call 401.736.4550 or visit www.kenthospital.org.)

If you think someone may be having a stroke, act F.A.S.T. and do this simple test from the National Stroke Association:

    Act F.A.S.T.

    FACE    Ask the person to smile.
            Does one side of the face droop?

    ARMS    Ask the person to raise both arms.
            Does one arm drift downward?

    SPEECH  Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence.
            Are the words slurred?  Can he/she repeat the sentence correctly?

    TIME    If the person shows any of these symptoms, time is important.
            Call 911 or get to the hospital fast. Brain cells are dying.

Stroke Symptoms include:

SUDDEN numbness or weakness of face, arm or leg – especially on one side of the body.

SUDDEN confusion, trouble speaking or understanding.

SUDDEN trouble seeing in one or both eyes.

SUDDEN trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination.

SUDDEN severe headache with no known cause.

Call 9-1-1 immediately if you have any of these symptoms.

SOURCE Kent Hospital

Source: newswire

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