Baystate Franklin awarded by American Heart Association

GREENFIELD — Baystate Franklin Medical Center has received an award from the American Heart Association recognizing commitment to quality care for stroke patients.

The hospital has received the “Get With The Guidelines Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award” for four consecutive years, moving from Silver in 2011, to Gold in 2012, and advancing to Gold Plus in 2013 and 2014.

Receiving the award demonstrates Baystate Franklin’s commitment to and success in implementing a higher standard of care by ensuring that stroke patients receive treatment according to nationally accepted guidelines, the hospital said.

According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, stroke is one of the leading causes of death and serious, long-term disability in the United States. On average, someone suffers a stroke every 40 seconds; someone dies of a stroke every four minutes; and 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year.

“The quick and efficient use of guideline procedures can improve the quality of care for stroke patients and may reduce disability and save lives,” said Dr. Rajiv Padmanabhan, a neurologist at Baystate Franklin and a member of the BFMC stroke committee. “At Baystate Franklin, we have a stroke team available 24/7, and also have the ability to quickly connect to physicians at Baystate Medical Center via a telemedicine process for additional assessment.”

Padmanabhan also explained that the hospital has a stroke alert system with first responders bringing in a patient by ambulance.

“Once the EMTs initiate that stroke alert, our team can assemble and be ready to accept the patient the moment he or she arrives at the hospital. This coordination among all who are involved in stroke assessment and treatment can mean the difference between life and death for a stroke patient.”

At Baystate Franklin Medical Center, the stroke team includes a neurologist, emergency physicians and nurses, radiologists, the CT scan technologists and laboratory. A core team meets regularly to stay up to date with the latest best practices.

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