Hutchinson Regional Medical Center (HRMC) has earned the Gold Seal of Approval and the Heart-Checkmark for Advanced Primary Stroke Recertification, jointly granted by the Joint Commission (TJC) and the American Stroke Association.
TJC, an international accreditation organization, is headquartered in Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois and the American Stroke Association, an entity of the American Heart Association, is headquartered in Dallas, Texas.
Julie Wiens, RN, MSN, Clinical Quality Coordinator, said Hutchinson Regional underwent a rigorous onsite Recertification Review in January. “A TJC reviewer evaluated compliance with stroke-related standards, including program management, supporting self-management, delivering and facilitating clinical care, and performance improvement,” Wiens said. “The TJC standards are developed in consultation with health experts and providers, measurement experts, and patients.”
Bobbie Starks, RN, MSN Critical Care Educator, said the primary stroke certification is a voluntary process dedicated to reducing the occurrence of stroke and improving the lives of patients who deal with this medical issue. “HRMC’s stroke program uses a multidisciplinary approach and is dedicated to providing the best outcomes for victims of stroke,” Starks said. “We incorporate cutting-edge technologies like advanced imaging and use telemedicine to provide expert neurological care at the bedside.”
TJC Chief Operating Officer Mark Pelletier said the Advanced Primary Stroke Certification recognizes health care organizations committed to fostering continuous quality improvement in patient safety and quality of care. “We commend Hutchinson Regional Medical Center for using certification to reduce variation in its clinical processes and to strengthen its program structure and management framework for patients,” Pelletier said.
Nancy Brown, Chief Executive Officer for the American Stroke Association termed the award an outstanding achievement. “This certification reflects Hutchinson Regional’s commitment to providing the highest quality of care for stroke patients,” she said.
Ken Johnson, President and CEO of Hutchinson Regional Healthcare System (HRHS), said the recertification is reaffirmation of Hutchinson Regional’s successful efforts to provide high quality stroke treatments to south central Kansas. “The national designation provides Hutchinson Regional with the opportunity to recognize the exceptional staff in the stroke center as we strive to advance our care to the next level of excellence,” Johnson said.
Annually, Hutchinson Regional cares for more than 450 patients experiencing stroke symptoms. Nationwide, nearly 800,000 Americans suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year. Time is critical in treating strokes, as every minute may result in damage to millions of brain cells. The American Heart Association recommends that anyone experiencing stroke symptom call 911 immediately for life-saving treatment.
The “Five Sudden Symptoms of Stroke” are:
- SUDDEN difficulty speaking, slurred speech, confusion, or difficulty understanding.
- SUDDEN onset of blurred or double vision or trouble seeing out of one or both eyes.
- SUDDEN weakness or numbness of the face, arm, or leg on one side of the body.
- SUDDEN dizziness, difficulty walking, or loss of balance/coordination.
- SUDDEN severe or unusual headache with no known reason.
Hutchinson Regional Medical Center is an entity of Hutchinson Regional Healthcare System. Other entities are Health-E-Quip, Horizons Mental Health Center, Hospice & HomeCare of Reno County, and Hutchinson Regional Medical Foundation.