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Lewis County Health System awarded for efforts to improve rural stroke care

Published on September 06, 2023

LCHS Bronze Stroke Recognition

LOWVILLE- Lewis County Health System has received an award for their efforts in campaigning to help reduce the risks for stroke and heart disease.

On behalf of the American Heart Association, the 'Get With The Guidelines - Stroke Rural Recognition Bronze Award' is given based on efforts to optimize stroke care and eliminate rural health care outcome disparities. 

“Rural communities deserve high quality stroke care. I applaud our team for their commitment to stroke care excellence and this achievement,” said Gerald Cayer, MPH, LCHS Chief Executive Officer.

According to officials, people who live in rural communities live an average of three years fewer than urban counterparts and have a 40% higher likelihood of developing heart disease and face a 30% increased risk for stroke mortality.

That's a gap that has grown over the past two decades and LCHS is committed to changing that. 

“Patients and health care professionals in Lewis County and the North Country face unique health care challenges and opportunities,” said Karen E. Joynt Maddox, M.D., MPH, volunteer expert for the American Heart Association, co-author on 'Call to Action: Rural Health: A Presidential Advisory From the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association' and co-director of the Center for Health Economics and Policy at the Institute for Public Health at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri.

“Lewis County Health System has furthered this important work to improve care for all Americans, regardless of where they live.”

The award recognizes hospitals for their efforts toward acute stroke care excellence demonstrated by composite score compliance to guideline-directed care for intravenous thrombolytic therapy, timely hospital inter-facility transfer, dysphagia screening, symptom timeline and deficit assessment documentation, emergency medical services communication, brain imaging and stroke expert consultation. 

The American Heart Association, the world’s leading nonprofit organization focused on heart and brain health for all, recognizes the importance of health care services provided to people living in rural areas by rural hospitals that play a vital role in initiation of timely evidence-based care.

For that reason, all rural hospitals participating in Get With The Guidelines® - Stroke are eligible to receive award recognition based on a unique methodology focused on early acute stroke performance metrics.

In photo: Front row L to R – Lyndsey Allen, RN, Felicia Bacon, PharmD, Sherry Beyer, PT, Megan Stockman, RN, and Rebecca Keefer, RN. Back Row L to R – Robert Pfieffer, Lucy Austin, PharmD, Tracie Davoy, RN, Marcy Teal, RN, Emily Paulsen, RN, and Randy Mullin.

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