Largo Medical Center May 29, 2015

LARGO, FL – Largo Medical Center received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines – Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award with Target: StrokeSM Honor Roll at the hospital’s Annual Stroke Smart public education and awareness event today. The award recognizes the hospital’s commitment and success ensuring stroke patients receive the most appropriate treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines based on the latest scientific evidence.

“With a stroke, time lost is brain lost, and this award demonstrates our commitment to ensuring patients receive quality care based on nationally-respected clinical guidelines,” said Anthony Degina, CEO, Largo Medical Center. “Our hospital has also met specific scientific guidelines as a Primary Stroke Center meaning we have a comprehensive system for rapid diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients admitted to the ER.”

To receive this 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 achieved 75 percent or higher compliance with five of eight Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Quality measures.

To qualify for the Target: Stroke Honor Roll, 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 PA, the only drug approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat ischemic stroke. If given intravenously in the first three hours after the start of stroke symptoms, PA has been shown to significantly reduce the effects of stroke and lessen the chance of permanent disability.

“We are pleased to recognize Largo Medical Center employees for their commitment 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 Cardiovascular Programs at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. “Studies show 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.”

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 and someone dies of a stroke every four minutes.

To learn more about this award, call Tammy Robiconti, Director of Marketing & Public Relations at Largo Medical at (727) 348-1896.