With a stroke, every moment counts, and now the University of Virginia Medical Center has proved to exceed national standards.
The American Heart Association awarded UVA with two awards for excellent care. The program took home the “Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award,” the highest level possible, and made the “Target: Stroke Honor Roll.”
The stroke program also won accolades for education of risk factors and its efforts to exceed rehabilitation steps.
Members of the stroke program's team say they are proud and want to keep the community on top of ongoing efforts to treat and rehabilitate their patients. One of the key measurements of good stroke care is how long it takes to treat a patient suffering from a stroke upon entering the department. The average is 52 minutes, according to the program's director.
"Essentially, when you're having a stroke, blood flow to your brain is disrupted. And the longer that that is blocked or damaged, the more brain cells that die. We have a saying that time is brain. Time really matters in treating stroke,” said Heather Turner, a registered nurse and coordinator of the stroke program.
Symptoms of stroke include sudden onset of numbness, confusion, visual problems, dizziness, loss of balance, and severe headache with no known cause.
And since last year, UVA has also improved how many patients are treated within the crucial one-hour window. UVA also administers that treatment, on average, 11 minutes faster than the national average.
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